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Photo Equipment Also Reviewed Special Profile

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Masters of Photography Photography Devendra and Trupti Naik Schools

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WELCOME

EDITOR Hoshang S. Billimoria TECHNICAL EDITOR Rohinton Mehta ASSISTANT EDITOR Sujith Gopinath COPY EDITOR Mystica Vora

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PHOTOGRAPHY Mahesh Reddy

ou may well ask why we should have a look at landscape photography in the month of August when the Indian monsoon is in full swing. Well, September is not far away and there is no better time to capture the greenery of the countryside, the waterfalls and associated attractions. Everything looks so refreshed and enticing! Landscape photography is also the most satisfying aspect of photography. There is nothing better than to sit back and enjoy superb landscape shots. Finally, sharpness is crucial to landscape photography; so do not forget to take your tripod along.

HEAD-DESIGN & PRODUCTION Ravi Parmar ASST ART DIRECTOR Nandkishor Sawant PRODUCTION SUPERVISOR Dinesh Bhajnik PUBLISHER Girish Mallya GENERAL MANAGER (NORTH & EAST) Ellora Dasgupta GENERAL MANAGER (SOUTH) Girish Shet PRODUCT MANAGER Perseus Master HEAD OFFICE - MUMBAI Mafatlal Chambers B, Ground Floor, N. M. Joshi Marg, Lower Parel (E), Mumbai - 400 013 Tel: + 91 22 43525252 Email: sp@nextgenpublishing.net

To give you a double bonanza in a rainy month, we have also included a section on macro photogtraphy.

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HERE’S WHAT MAKES US

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WE ARE GLUED TO THE GLOBAL IMAGING INDUSTRY Our team is updated with all the benchmarks and road blocks that the field of photography and imaging across the globe experiences. This helps us record the changes in the global perspective, thus making us the first to predict which products will be a rage in the Indian markets. WE’RE IMPARTIAL Loyalty towards our readers is a given, and their best interests are always on our mind. Every verdict is honest and not influenced by advertisers or personal favorites. So when we say a product is a ‘BEST BUY’, then, it is just that! OUR TESTS ARE CONDUCTED BY EXPERTS All equipment go through a series of tests at the hands of our experts. Our reviewers are experts in the field of photography across the country and have many years of experience. That gives us the foresight to distinguish between a passing trend and a big change in the field of photography and imaging. And finally, our reviews are not extended to just fill up the pages! WE ARE HERE TO HELP YOU There is no debate on why we are here. Our sole goal is to provide you options and better your judgement in product purchase while, sharing tips and tricks to improve your images. Our biggest joy is in building a bridge between you and your perfect picture!

Views and opinions expressed in the magazine are not necessarily those of Next Gen Publishing Pvt. Ltd. Next Gen Publishing does not take the responsibility for returning unsolicited material sent without adequate postal stamps for return postage. No part of the magazine may be reproduced in part or full without the prior express written permission of the publisher. Printed by Girish Mallya, Next Gen Publishing Pvt. Ltd., Mafatlal Chambers B, Ground Floor, N. M. Joshi Marg, Lower Parel (E), Mumbai - 400 013. Published by Girish Mallya on behalf of Next Gen Publishing Pvt. Ltd., Mafatlal Chambers B, Ground Floor, N. M. Joshi Marg, Lower Parel (E), Mumbai - 400 013. Printed at Kala Jyothi Process Pvt. Ltd, 1-1-60/5 RTCX Roads, Hyderabad - 20. Published at Next Gen Publishing Pvt. Ltd., Mafatlal Chambers B, Ground Floor, N. M. Joshi Marg, Lower

Parel (E), Mumbai - 400 013. Copyright 2014 SMART PHOTOGRAPHY All readers are recommended to make their own independent enquiries before sending money, incurring expenses or entering into commitments in relation to any advertisement appearing in the publication. Smart Photography does not vouch for any claims made by advertisers for their products and services. The editor, publisher, printer and employees of the publication shall not be held liable for any consequence in the events of such claims not being honoured by the advertisers. All disputes are subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of competent courts and forums in Mumbai only. Editor – Hoshang S Billimoria

www.smartphotography.in

Smart Photography August 2018

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H. S. Billimoria

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ISSUE 161 / AUGUST 2018

CONTENTS

42

Mastercraftsman

The masters of the craft share their insights and photographs

32

36

Smart Photography August 2018

Kaleidoscope

6

A platform for budding photographers to exhibit their talent and get noticed!

Showcase

A photographic profile of the person behind the lens

74 Ask Uncle Ronnie Our expert answers to your queries

Just a moment!

Readers can find the updated Buyer’s Guide, log on http://smartphotography.in/news/monthly-special Smart Photography thanks the readers who participate in the Picture of the Month contest. We would like to bring to your attention a few changes in the rules for submission. From now on, you may send in your images with the longer side measuring atleast 17 inches. Please note that the images have to be horizontal. This permits readers to submit panoramic shots, which was not possible with the current size of 17 x 11 inches.

www.smartphotography.in


REGULARS

REVIEWS

10 Mailbag 12 Newswatch 28 Picture of the Month

92 Sony Alpha 7 III

It’s time for rewards and here it is...

SPECIALS

52 56 Majestic Macros 64 Love for Landscapes Beautiful Belles

Sean Archer shares with us some of his beautiful portraits Here is a peep into the tiny world of macro photography Landscapes come alive during the rains, and we have compiled a few worth a look

LEARNINGS

78 Macro Photography 84 Landscape Photography Second-Hand Photo 89 Equipment Ashok Kandimalla teaches the technicalities of macro photography

Uncle Ronnie shows us how to photograph captivating landscapes

Smart Photography August 2018

What are the pitfalls you need to be aware of while looking for second-hand equipment?

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www.smartphotography.in

100 Fujifilm X-T100

X-T100

IA

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Special Features

Majestic

Macros

Love for

Learnings

How to capture

Macros

Photographing

Landscapes Second-Hand

Photo Equipment Also Reviewed Special Profile

Sean Archer

REVIEWS

PANASONIC LUMIX G85

Profile

Interview

Rajesh Jyothiswaran Ketan Vikamsey

HONOR 10

HUAWEI P20 PRO

ONEPLUS 6

Sony E 10-18mm f/4 OSS Yongnuo YN35mm f/2N

INDIA’S NUMBER 1 IMAGING MAGAZINE!

B &W IA L SP EC

104 Sony E 10-18 mm f/4 OSS

Special Feature

Monochrome Magic

An ultra-wide angle lens for Sony E-mount APS-C sensor cameras mount

Learnings

Black and White Photography

Converting to B&W Portraits in

Monochrome

How to get that

Large Format Look About Sensor Sizes

A low-budget prime lens in Nikon

FIRST LOOK

108 Moza Mini-MI 109 Vanguard Veo II 264CB

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Volume 14 • Issue 4 • July 2018

Another retro-styled APS-C mirrorless for enthusiasts

106 Yongnuo YN35 mm f/2N

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Will this entry-level D-SLR be able to match up to the competition?

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O & EC CR SP MAAPE C DS

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News from the industry, fresh from the oven

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Perfectly Clear

REVIEWS SUBSCRIBER’S COPY TOTAL PAGES 140

Bouquets, brickbats...we have a place for your valuable feedback

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CONTENTS

Cover credit: Sutirtha Ray

Specials

Special Profile

Profile

Interview

Neelam Vyas

Randeep Singh

Christian Bucher

CANON EOS M50

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Postcards from Cyprus

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Volume 14 • Issue 3 • June 2018

Learnings

A gimbal stabiliser for your smartphone videos

Camera Calibration for Persistent Colour Cast How to set up Photoshop for

Optimum Performance

Three methods to ensure

Accurate Colours in Photoshop Infrared Imaging Luminosity Masking Focus Stacking

Compact and lightweight, this carbon fibre tripod can accompany you anywhere

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Also Reviewed

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Street Photography

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Volume 14 • Issue 4 • July 2018

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B &W IA L SP EC

Special Feature

Monochrome Magic Learnings

Black and White Photography

Converting to B&W Portraits in

Monochrome VOLUME 14 | ISSUE 4 | JULY 2018

Write to us at: Smart Photography, Next Gen Publishing Pvt. Ltd., Mafatlal Chambers B, Ground Floor, N. M. Joshi Marg, Lower Parel (E), Mumbai - 400 013 E-mail: sp@nextgenpublishing.net

How to get that

Large Format Look About Sensor Sizes Perfectly Clear Special Profile

Profile

Interview

Neelam Vyas

Randeep Singh

Christian Bucher

Specials

Postcards from Cyprus

Worth a Buy! Dear SP,

The theme B&W brought a lot of insight in the pictures. Mastercraftsman which was like the heading suggest ‘Beyond Barriers’. Smart Photography is always worth a buy. I admire how the team puts together this beautiful magazine. Yours faithfully, Asad Shaikh, Rajasthan

Great Depth! Dear Editor,

I am a budding photographer who reads SP every month. I feel that the ‘Monochrome Magic’ images were stunning. The theme B&W was rightly chosen to showcase great depth. I always felt that my images in B&W spoke to me more than the coloured. However, it is always one’s personal choice. This is a wonderful magazine to read. Yours thankfully, Kiran Dwivedi, Jamshedpur

WANT TO BE PART OF THE SMART PHOTOGRAPHY TEAM? We need you if you: • Have a keen eye for detail • Are obsessed with spotting spelling, syntactic and factual errors in text, whether it is an advertisement, a public notice or a news website • Are not easily put off by technical details and specifications • Have the patience to edit, rewrite and proof-read long technical and non-technical features • Can take responsibility for the language, punctuations and syntax in the magazine • Are a quick learner • Have an interest in photography and imaging • Can spot new talent in photography and feature them in the magazine

Smart Photography August 2018

Smart Photography is looking for a Copy Editor to join our Mumbai team, preferrably a candidate with some experience in copy editing. A degree in journalism or English is preferred, but not essential. Similarly, some experience in photography helps, but is not essential. Confident freshers can also apply.

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If you think you fit the bill, send your CV along with links to your published works (if any) to d.jadhav@nextgenpublishing.net


SP

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International

Canon now selling CMOS image sensors

C

anon has started selling 3 CMOS image sensors -120MXS, 3U5MGXS and 35MMFHDXS.

The 120MXS is an ultra-high resolution CMOS sensor with 13280 x 9184 effective pixels (approx. 60x the resolution of Full HD). It has a size equivalent to APS-H (29.22mm x 20.20mm), and a square pixel arrangement of 2.2µm x 2.2µm with 122

million effective pixels. It is available in RGB or with twice the sensitivity, in monochrome. The 3U5MGXS global shutter image sensor employs a new pixel design introducing new drive readout and light guiding technologies significantly expanding the full well capacity, reducing noise, and contributing to the wide dynamic range with a power consumption of

500mW. It is equipped with a global shutter and provides an all pixel progressive reading at 120 fps. The sensor allows for applications where smaller size and high performance are required. It is available in RGB and Monochrome.

The 35MMFHDXS CMOS sensor delivers high sensitivity, lownoise imaging performance, even in exceptionally low-light

environments. The sensor’s pixels and readout circuitry employ new technologies that reduce noise, which tends to increase as pixel size increases. High sensitivity and increased well depth have been achieved through a larger pixel size of 19µm x 19µm (square) with proprietary device design technologies. The 35MMFHDXS CMOS sensor is available in RGB or Monochrome.

The National Geographic 2018 Grand Prize winner ‘Reiko Takahashi’

R

eiko Takahashi has been announced as the Grand Prize winner for The National Geographic 2018 Travel Photographer of the Year Contest.

Smart Photography August 2018

Reiko Takahashi spent her childhood in Sanriku Coast, Japan until she graduated high school.

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She grew up watching the sea all day long. The first time she held a camera she photographed her dog. Ever since then she began photographing nature all around her in Tohoku, Japan. She was also passionate about diving ever since a young age, hence she moved on from photographing land to underwater. She considers herself to be fortunate to have encountered a humpback whale snorkelling near Japan’s Kumejima Island.

The National Geographic 2018 Travel Photographer of the Year Contest began on April 2, 2018, and ended on May 31, 2018. www.smartphotography.in

The categories for submissions were: (1) Nature, (2) People; (3) Cities. There was no limit on the number of entries per person. Each submission had to comply with the guidelines, located on the website. The judging consisted of two rounds of evaluation. In round one, a panel of judges selected by Sponsor in its sole discretion selected up to twenty entries from among all eligible submissions based on the following criteria: (1) Creativity 35%, (2) Photographic quality 35% and (3) Composition 30%. In round two, the Judges selected one finalist from each of the three categories. Of the three finalists, one was selected as the “Grand Prize Winner” and the remaining two were named“First Prize Winner”. She received $10,000 and the two first place winners received $2,500.

Reiko Takahashi Mermaid


SP

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International

Leica announces C-Lux camera

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eica has announced the C-Lux camera with the Leica DC Vario-Elmar 8.8–132 mm f/3.3–6.4 ASPH lens and 20-megapixel sensor. The camera has a versatile zoom lens, fast autofocus and face detection. The autofocus has 49 metering points and a continuous shooting rate of 10 frames per second. The maximum ISO sensitivity is up to 25600. The viewfinder’s high resolution is 2.33 megapixels and covers 100% of the image field. The camera also offers dioptre compensation settings that allow spectacle wearers to use the

the colours taupe, blue and red. The portfolio also offers premium quality camera cases, protectors and soft pouches. Also available is an outdoor bag in hardwearing, water-repellent fabric.

viewfinder without any problems. The camera has a 3-inch touchscreen display. The display screen features a special repellent coating that prevents marks and protects it against fingerprints.

The camera features a high-definition, 4K-resolution, digital video recording function. The resolution is fourtimes higher than full-HD and up to 30p & 100 Mbit in MP4 format. The compact Leica C-Lux offers an extensive range of accessories

in matching and complementary colours for both the colour versions of the camera. These include carrying straps and wrist straps for the camera in

The Leica C-Lux will be on sale in the colour options Light Gold and Midnight Blue at RRP £875 including VAT. The range of accessories will also be available when sales of the camera begin.

Voigtlander announces Macro APO-LANTHAR 110mm f/2.5

V

oigtlander has announced the 110mm f/2.5 Macro APO-Lanthar lens for Sony E-Mount.

Smart Photography August 2018

The Macro APO-LANTHAR 110mm f/2.5 is a highperformance manual focus 1:1 macro lens optimised for the imaging sensors of Sony mirrorless cameras. The lens is highly corrected to eliminate optical aberrations including longitudinal chromatic aberration. The lens covers the full frame image area and

14

www.smartphotography.in

achieves a maximum image reproduction of 1:1 life size with no additional attachments. The lens has a 3-group floating mechanism to adjust three optical groups according to focus distance. The 110mm focal length on full frame format ensures a good working distance from subjects for macro shooting. The strong out-of-focus ‘bokeh’ effect is made possible by the 110mm focal length and f/2.5 maximum aperture.

This lens has a manual focus and manual aperture design and also features electrical contacts that enable the lens settings at image capture to be included in the EXIF information of the image data. Furthermore, the lens is installed with a distance encoder to enable support for 5-axis image stabilisation on bodies with this feature, by providing distance to subject information used to compensate for camera shake. Focus Peaking while manual focussing is also supported.


SP

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International

Nikon announces Coolpix P1000 Fine Zoom4, equivalent to a staggering 6000mm from macro to extreme distances. The Nikon Expeed image processing system and Dual Detect Optical VR technology for 5-stops of camera shake compensation help capture sharp images and reduce blur. It also features a 16-megapixel backside illuminated (BSI) CMOS sensor and expanded ISO range up to 6400. The Coolpix P1000 also boasts a variety of high-speed features including a quick start-up and fast Autofocus (AF) system.

N

ikon Inc. has announced the Coolpix P1000, camera.

The Coolpix P1000 incorporates

the Nikkor technology, designed with ED and Super ED lens elements, boasts the 125X optical zoom lens (24-3000mm f/2.8-8) and 250X Dynamic

The Coolpix P1000 offers a complete control layout with a function button, command dial and mode dial. Additionally, the camera includes a focus mode selector that can be used to change the focus mode and a control ring that allows for

the adjustment of settings such as the white balance and manual focus. The camera has a 2.3-million dot OLED electronic viewfinder (EVF) for composing shots, and a Vari-Angle 3.2-inch 921K-dot TFT LCD display. The P1000 includes UHD video with stereo audio recording and time-lapse effects.

Nikon has also announced the ML-L7 Bluetooth connected remote as another optional accessory available for the Coolpix P1000 with various camera functions, including video start and smooth zoom control. The Coolpix P1000 will have a suggested retail price of $999.95 and will be available in September 2018. The new MLL7 Bluetooth connected remote control will also be available in September 2018 for USD $49.95.

Sony introduces 400mm f/2.8 G Master Prime lens

S

Smart Photography August 2018

ony has announced the FE 400mm f/2.8 GM OSS large aperture super-telephoto prime lens.

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The lens features two newly developed high-speed XD (extreme dynamic) Linear Motors that drive the lens’s focus group, achieving up to a 5x improvement in movingsubject tracking performance. These motors are supported by specially developed motion algorithms to minimise lag and instability, and control noise levels. Sony’s unique optical design includes three fluorite elements that help to minimise chromatic aberration and suppress any www.smartphotography.in

colour bleeding. The lens also features an 11-blade circular aperture mechanism that allows it to produce an extremely natural background defocus or ‘bokeh’. The FE 400mm f/2.8 GM OSS is compatible with Sony’s 1.4x and 2.0x E-mount teleconverters. The lens’s customisable focus-hold buttons are in four different locations on the lens barrel, which can be programmed for control of features. There is also a ‘Full-Time DMF’ switch to immediately engage manual

focus at any point, and a focus ring that features Linear Response MF for fine, responsive manual focus. Additionally, the new lens includes built-in optical stabilisation and three different ‘Mode’ settings, including a brand new Mode 3 setting with an advanced algorithm that ensures easier framing when following moving subjects. It also features a function ring

with selectable ‘Preset’ and ‘Function ’ settings, which is a first for any Sony lens. The FE 400mm f/2.8 GM OSS includes a drop-in filter slot that accepts 40.5mm ND and other filter types, as well as the optional VF-DCPL1 Dropin Circular Polarizing Filter. The VF-DCPL1 filter can be rotated to achieve the desired polarisation while in the lens.

The FE 400mm f/2.8 GM OSS large aperture super-telephoto prime lens weighs slightly more than 2.5kg and will ship in September for about $12,000 US.


The SD Association has announced SD Express. The PCIe interface delivers 985 megabytes per second (MB/s) maximum data transfer rate and the NVMe upper layer protocol enables advanced memory access mechanism. In addition, the

maximum storage capacity in SD memory cards increases from 2TB with SDXC to 128 TB with the SD Ultra Capacity (SDUC) card.

Fujifilm announces Fujinon Xf 8-16mm f/2.8 R LM WR lens Fujifilm North America Corporation has announced the Fujinon XF8-16mm f/2.8 R LM WR Lens, an ultra-wide angle zoom lens with a constant maximum aperture of f/2.8 and focal length equivalent to 1224mm (35mm format).

The XF8-16mm f/2.8 R LM WR features an optical construction of 20 elements in 13 groups, including 4 aspherical lens elements to control distortion and spherical aberration, and 6 ED lens elements including 3 super ED elements to control lateral chromatic aberration. The XF8-16mm f/2.8 R LM WR achieves edge-to-edge sharpness, and corrects field curvature that is typically found in ultra-wide-angle lenses. The lens barrel is lightweight yet robust, sealed at 11 points that is designed to be weather and dust-resistant and capable of operating in temperatures as low as 14°F/-10°C.

Fujifilm introduces XF10

F

ujifilm has announced the XF10, a premium compact digital camera with a high quality Fujinon 18.5mm f/2.8 fixed lens. The XF10 has a 24.2 megapixel APS-C sized sensor with proprietary colour reproduction technology. Both 4K movie and Full HD high speed video are available on the XF10. The camera is the first X-Series camera to offer the new “SQUARE MODE,” which allows users to switch to a 1:1 format with a single flick of the touchscreen.

The XF10 features an 18.5mm f/2.8 Fujinon lens (equivalent to 28mm on 35mm format). The optical design of the lens is perfectly matched to the sensor in the XF10, to ensure there is no compromise in quality

due to the camera’s compact size. The Digital Teleconverter function in the camera is capable of taking photos with equivalent focal lengths of 35mm and 50mm on a 35mm format. The camera offers 11 Fujifilm

Film Simulations and 19 Advanced Filters, and also introduces two new Advanced Filters – “Rich & Fine” and “Monochrome [NIR]”.

The XF10 weighs 280g and is available in black or champagne gold.

Vivo showcases TOF 3D Sensing Technology at MWC Shanghai 2018

V

ivo has announced its Time of Flight (TOF) 3D Sensing Technology at MWC Shanghai 2018. Vivo’s TOF 3D Sensing Technology detects the time it takes, for emitted pulse light to return to the sensor, to accurately map objects up to three meters in front of it. It enables new opportunities for facial, gesture and motion recognition, 3D photography and AR, thereby expanding the capabilities of the next generation of smart devices. Vivo’s TOF 3D Sensing Technology features in depth of information captured with its 300,000 sensor points,

which is 10 times the number of existing Structured Light Technology. It enables 3D mapping at up to three meters from the phone while having a smaller baseline than Structured Light. TOF 3D Sensing Technology is also simpler and smaller in structure and allows for more flexibility when embedded in a smartphone. This will enable much broader application of this technology than was previously possible. Vivo’s TOF 3D Sensing Technology is tested and meets industry standards for integration for current apps. Merging this technology

with AR capabilities could take one step further and allow users to try on clothes virtually with enhanced 3D virtual fitting. It can also track gestures for mixed reality (MR) games.

Combining AI recognition with TOF 3D Sensing Technology’s precise understanding users can even capture entire objects using 3D modelling. Scanning and recreating entire objects digitally would be possible. This technology can be used to scan lesson props for education, or even help scan critical parts of the body for medical purposes.

www.smartphotography.in

Smart Photography August 2018

SD Express memory cards

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Business

Top-10 smartphone makers of 2017

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nternational Data Corporation has released this year’s Top 10 smartphone makers list. Samsung topped the list with

Foxconn, Oppo, Vivo, Pegatron, LG Electronics, Inventec, Flextronics International, Huaqing Telecom Technology and ZTE following. However,

Foxconn (Hon Hai) overtook Samsung in Q1 due to Foxconn purchasing Premier Camera of Taiwan a few years ago. As developed markets

become more saturated with smartphones, makers are developing simpler models for emerging markets where growth should be stronger.

Xiaomi intends to raise USD 10 billion

X

iaomi, the world’s fourthlargest smartphone maker ranked by shipments, has submitted an IPO (initial public offering)

application in Hong Kong under new listing regulations for technology start-ups. Bankers familiar with the plan said that the Beijing based company is

seeking to raise US$10 billion, in a sale that values the eight-yearold company at US$100 billion. That would position Xiaomi, to become the third-biggest

Chinese technology company by value, after Tencent Holdings and Alibaba Group Holding, according to the reports by SCMP newspaper.

Oppo signs an agreement with Corephotonics

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ppo has signed a strategic licensing agreement with the Israeli company Corephotonics, a developer of smart camera

technologies based in Israel. They will merge for the development of Oppo’s smartphone camera roadmap, covering optical zoom, depth

mapping for ‘bokeh’ simulation and related features, as well as smartphone camera optics, mechanics, computational imaging

and deep learning etc. Corephotonics is suing Apple apparently for infringing its patents for dual-lens cameras, according to reports.

T-Mobile, Sprint to Combine in $146 Billion All-Stock Deal

Smart Photography August 2018

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print and T-Mobile have agreed to an all-stock merger that will value the combined company at $146 billion (including debt) and create a more formidable No. 3 wireless carrier with more than 100 million customers, reported TWICE eNews. Several reports said the two were close to a deal on 4th May 2018. This is the third time that the two companies have tried this www.smartphotography.in

joint venture. In 2014 the deal was scrapped after federal regulators hinted that they would not approve the deal. In November, the companies again tried to reach a deal, only to back out after being unable to agree on control issues. Earlier in April, the companies reached out to each other again. The control issues seem to have been worked out, with T-Mobile executives

dominating the top roles in the new company, which will continue with the T-Mobile name. T-Mobile CEO John Legere will be running the new company with the same title. Masayoshi Son, chairman and CEO of Sprint’s owner SoftBank Group and Marcelo Claure, current Sprint CEO, will serve on the board of the new company. During the closing period, T-Mobile parent Deutsche

Telekom will control about 42% of the company, SoftBank will hold 27% and the public will control 31% of shares. Deutsche Telekom also will be controlling about 69% of the vote of the new company and has the right to elect nine of the 14 members of the board of directors. The companies expect to close the deal in the first half of next year. The new company will invest $40 billion in three years to establish 5G services.


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Business

Sony A9 wins ‘The Camera of the Year’ at the Grand Prix 2018

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he Camera Grand Prix 2018 organised by the Camera Grand Prix Committee of the Camera Journal Press Club (CJPC, Japan) has selected the following awards for the

winners of 2018.

17mm f/1.2 Pro

The Lens of the Year: Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED

Editors Award: Nikon D850 and Panasonic

The Camera of the Year: Sony Alpha 9 (A9)

Readers Award: Nikon D850

Lumix G9 Pro

The four awards were selected from products introduced into the market from April 1st, 2017 to March 31st, 2018.

Konica Minolta announces financial results

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onica Minolta Co. has announced its financial report for the fiscal year that ended on 31st March 2018. The total sales increased by 7.1% to 1,031.3 billion yen.

In the Office Business, sales of multi-functional photocopiers for corporations and governments/municipal offices were favourable for colour and monochrome models. Sales of high-value-

added models for office use in the North American markets were considerably good. The sales of the IT service unit was strong in the North Americas, centring on security-related solution business.

In the Professional Print segment, sales of production printing machines increased significantly, while in the industrialised countries the sales were low.

Memjet and Canon enter into Crosslicense Agreement

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emjet and Canon have announced that they have entered into a long-term global agreement to cross-license their patents around key segments

and applications. Terms of the agreement remain confidential.

“We are excited and pleased with our agreement with Canon, which validates the

value of our technology,” said Len Lauer, CEO of Memjet. “This agreement showcases the breadth and strength of our intellectual property portfolio of patents.”

Memjet’s original technology platform – VersaPass, is an aqueous dye-based, single-pass digital print system that enables on-demand printing in a variety of markets.

Smart Photography August 2018

Worldwide printer shipment in 2017 rises 0.9% year-on-year

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he worldwide shipment of printers in 2017 rose by 0.9% year-onyear with 100 million units, according to IDC Japan. During October to December 2017, there was a good amount of www.smartphotography.in

shipments of inkjet printers in emerging countries that contributed to the growth. However, it is not certain if the good trend will continue or not, since the trend for paperless in the industrialised

countries is progressing. Market share by companies on a shipment volume basis: HP of US is the No.1 at 39.2%, followed by Canon Group at 20.9%, Seiko Epson at 18.3%, Brother Industries at 7.5%,

Xerox Group at 2.3% and others total 11.8%. Epson fs model with a big ink tank sold well centring on Asian market thus it introduced similar models on the Japanese market and Canon follow suit.


Through twitter, we aim to share the latest news, shopping deals, new offerings in the home and decor space. Please share interesting story links with us, for us to spread the happiness. @IdealhomeIndia

We aim to share behind the scene pictures and shoots, which are unable to reach the print magazine. Insta stories will carry making of our shoots and pictures from launch events. www.instagram.com/theidealhomeandgarden

We will share the latest webstories and behind the shoot pictures of our latest photoshoots. www.facebook.com/theidealhomeandgarden

We plan to create themed pin boards on various interest areas. Do hit us with ideas and suggestions on themes we should cover here. www.pinterest.com/theidealhomeIN

www.theidealhomeandgarden.com


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National

Fujifilm announces X-A5

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ujifilm India has announced the X-A5 mirrorless camera.

The X-A5 has a 24.2MP APS-C sensor, equipped with a phase detection autofocus system, and a newly developed image processing engine that is 1.5 times faster than previous models. The camera outperforms previous models in its scene recognition accuracy in SR+ AUTO mode, colour reproduction performance and skin tone reproduction capability. The ISO sensitivity is up to ISO12800. The X-A5 has also announced the Fujinon XC15-45mm f/3.5-5.6 OIS PZ zoom lens for the X Mount. The lens has the

minimum working distance of 5cm. The electric-powered zooming mechanism starts from the wide-angle 23mm end (on a 35mm format) for stills and video. The X-A5 is equipped with a large rear LCD monitor that can rotate 180 degrees. When the panel is rotated

180 degrees, the Rear Command Dial automatically switches to the Zoom and Shutter Release function. The 180-degree rotation of the rear LCD monitor also activates the Eye AF function automatically to create highquality self-portraits with sharp focus on the subject’s eyes.

The X-A5 offers a High-Speed HD Video function, recording HD video up to quad speed for slow-motion clips. The 4K Burst function offers to shoot 15 frames per second in 4K image quality.

The X-A5 weighs 496g with the Fujinon XC15-45mm F3.5-5.6 OIS PZ lens.

Digitek launches 3 axis smartphone gimbal stabiliser

D India.

igitek has launched a 3 axis smartphone gimbal stabiliser in

Smart Photography August 2018

The device uses in-use charging functionality. The Power On/Off touch options are loaded with functions to switch between the front

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www.smartphotography.in

and back lenses i.e. photo and video modes, with two and three clicks respectively. The mobile and stabiliser are connected via Bluetooth. The shoot function works in the photo and video mode depending on the clicks.

The joystick with the device facilitates smooth movements

of the gimbal. The stabiliser operates in three modes i.e. pan & tilt follow mode, pan following mode and lock mode. When the device is used with the stabiliser app, more features like face tracking, time lapse functions, smart object track, panorama shooting, zoom control, etc are made available. The device is compact and portable with one-handed design that enables intuitive operation. The 3 Axis Smartphone Gimbal Stabiliser is priced at an MRP of Rs. 10995 and is available at Amazon and Mobile Accessories outlets across the country.


Godox Witstro AD400 PRO the entire range). The AD400 Pro is compatible with TTL Auto Flash Systems of multi-brand cameras.

The Godox Witstro AD400 PRO will be available at all leading photography equipment dealers and E-commerce websites from September onwards. The product will be distributed by Nikita Distributors. (Tel: 02066050608)

Konica Minolta launches bizhub 658e series in India

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onica Minolta Business Solutions has announced the launch of the bizhub 658e/558e/458e black and white multifunction printer in India.

The printer has a robust design and its paper handling capability enables performance at 65 to 45 prints per minute. It is also

equipped with a largecapacity, high-speed Dual Scan Document Feeder (DSDF). It ensures the highest document feeding speed (240 ipm Duplex) and precision in A3 monochrome devices. The new and enhanced paper cassette of bizhub 658e/558e/458e improves the efficiency of paper feeding by setting a non-standard

size paper in the standard cassette and reduces the time and effort involved in paper feeding when printing in large volumes or on non-standard paper size.

Godox LC500 LED Light Stick

It supports a wide variety of MFP features and enables connectivity with mobile devices, cloud service, and third-party business applications.

Nikita Distributors, the authorised partner for Godox products in India, has launched a new LED Light Stick. It is considered a useful gadget for use in wedding photography, self-portraits and product shoots. Due to the very small diameter, the LED Stick can be easily positioned in places where no other luminaire can be placed. www.smartphotography.in

Smart Photography August 2018

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t seems that Godox is finally filling the gap between the AD200 and AD600 Pro with the new launch of AD400 Pro. The all-in-one outdoor flash AD400 Pro is the smaller version of the AD600 Pro and is rated at 400Ws. It offers a fast recycling time of 0.01 ~ 1 second, 12 continuous flashes at 1/16 power output, 30W LED modelling lamp, 390 fullpower pops and stable colour temperature (+/- 75 Kelvin over

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National

Nikita distributor to market Spyder 5

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professionals – Spyder5 Pro and Spyder5 Elite.

atacolor, the pioneer in colour management solution products, has launched two important monitor calibration devices for photography enthusiasts and

Moza Air Gimbal Relaunched

Nikita Distributors, authorised partners for Moza products in India has relaunched Moza Air with better package at a better

Smart Photography August 2018

price. The product is suitable for all makes of D-SLRs and can take a load of 3.2Kg. The kit includes the Gimbal, tripod, extra set of batteries, dual handles, QR baseplate and a remote for follow-focus and other functions. The product has new functions like follow-focus, sports and inception mode.

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The product is available with all leading photography equipment dealers and E-commerce websites. The Moza Air (complete package) carries a street price of Rs.40,000/- and 12 months hardware guarantee. www.smartphotography.in

The Spyder5 Pro is designed for serious photographers and designers while the

Spyder5 Elite is for professional photographers, studios and calibration perfectionists seeking the ultimate control in colour workflow. Both the products – Spyder5 Pro and Spyder5 Elite – will

be imported and distributed by Nikita Distributors. The products are available with all leading photography equipment dealers and e-commerce websites. The hardware warranty is 12 months. (Tel: 020-66050608)

Arshdeep Singh wins Nature Best Photography Award

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rshdeep Singh, a ten year boy old has been passionate about wildlife photography since he was six, has recently won the ‘Natures Best Photography Awards’ in the junior category for wildlife photography. He travels with his father for his wildlife photography trips, who is also a well known wildlife photographer from India. He has been to many national parks and bird sanctuaries within India. For him, wildlife photography is not only a passion but also dreams to preserve nature and wildlife. His work has been showcased in national and international publications such as Lonely Planet UK, Lonely Planet Germany, Lonely Planet India, BBC Wildlife UK etc, Sanctuary Asia and many other magazines. His work can be seen on his website www.Arshdeep.in Nature’s Best Photography Asia had presented its fourth annual awards competition specific to images taken in Asia, by photographers residing anywhere in the world. The duration of the competition was from 1st January to 31st March, 2018. The selected winners would be displaying their works in the Nature’s

Best Photography Annual exhibition opening in October at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History in

Washington D.C. — one of the most widely respected and highly visited museums in the world.

Arshdeep Singh Spotted Owlet - near Kanjli Wetlands, Kapurthala


APAC Photography presents ‘PHOTOFRY V’

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PAC photography institute has organised ‘PHOTOFRY V’ photography contest which is open to all.

The contest is divided into three subjects. A maximum of five entries are acceptable per subject per photographer. All the prints will be printed by HP Relington. The subjects for the contest are 1) Rain 2) Forest and 3) Fire. • 15 Winners will be felicitated by APAC trophies.

Photography) and Mr. Vinayak Parab, Editor (Lokprabha).

• Late Rajendra Dhure Trophy for one enthusiastic photographer of the contest.

Open judging will be held in September 2018. First, second, third and two runners-up per subject will be awarded. Winner’s entries will be exhibited on 20th and 21st October 2018 at Piramal Art Gallery, Nariman Point, Mumbai.

• One Lady Photographers Gift is announced for Best Lady Photographer participant.

• Winners will be getting Rambandhu Zaiqa gift hampers by Empire Spices and Foods Ltd.

For more details contact them at apacinstitute@gmail. com or call on 9323950977, 9324250371. You can also visit www.apacphotofry.com

The panel of judges includes Eminent Product Photographer Mr. Sandeep Mhatre, Mr. Rohinton Mehta Technical Editor (Smart

Fujifilm India announces Instax Square SQ6 in India

The Instax Square has an automatic exposure adjustment feature that gets activated when the shutter button is pressed. It detects the ambient brightness and adjusts to provide the optimum shutter speed and flash light intensity. The camera comes with a selfie mode that automatically adjusts brightness and focal length to the ideal level for capturing selfie images. The self-shot mirror attached to

the side of the lens checks the shooting range. Additionally, the Instax Square SQ6 has tripod holes, at the bottom of the unit and a timer. The camera has

R2L- Abha Xess, Senior Manager, Image Capturing, Fujifilm India, Masaki Zenko, Senior Manager, Image Capturing, Fujifilm India and SM Ramprasad, HOD, Image Capturing, Fujifilm India

three modes – the “Double Exposure Mode” that allows two photos to be overlapped on a single film when the shutter

button is pressed twice, the “Macro Mode” that takes shortrange photos up to a minimum of 30cm, and the “Landscape Mode” that can be used to take long-range landscape photos. It also includes three flash colour filters (orange/purple/green) that once placed over the flash

will change the colour of the overall photo.

The camera comes in three colour variations – pearl white, blush gold and graphite grey. The ring around the lens has a metallic finish and is matched to the colour of the main unit. www.smartphotography.in

Smart Photography August 2018

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ujifilm India Pvt Ltd has announced the ‘Instax Square SQ6’ as a new addition to the Instax series of instant camera lineup. The Instax SQ6 is compatible with square format films.

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PICTURE OF THE MONT

aph by r g o t o h P

Sanjoy

a y r a h c Bhatta

PICTURE OF THE MONTH

We are sure that all of you have a few pictures that you think are prize worthy. It happens very often that you don’t know where to send the image that could put a feather in your cap. If you have such images (we’re sure you have many!), send us ONE such horizontal image. If it qualifies, we shall publish it as a double-spread. a. You have to guarantee that the picture was shot by you b. If there are people in the picture who can be identified, we’ll need a model release c. The picture should not have been printed elsewhere (magazine newspaper, or offered to any publication) d. Mark the entry as “Picture of the Month” and rename the file using your name e. You may send images via print/e-mail to: Next Gen Publishing Pvt. Ltd., Mafatlal Chambers B, Ground Floor, N. M. Joshi Marg, Lower Parel (E), Mumbai - 400 013 (or) sphoto.india@gmail.com


A NOTE TO OUR READERS 1. The picture has to be horizontal. 2. Kindly ensure that the longer side should measure atleast 17 inches, at 300ppi. 3. Low resolution images will not be accepted.

4. We do not check images on online galleries. 5. Kindly ensure complete contact/address details are provided. 6. Please make sure that your picture does not have your name/logo on it.


PE le O C OS bo d

ID ar Go E L A d

K Man

Lovable Landscapes As told to Mystica Vora

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andar Godbole works as a Director for a software development multinational company in Bangalore. A mechanical engineer by education, he got attracted to the world of photography during a family trip to Kenya, when he just had a point and shoot camera. Now he pursues wildlife and landscape photography as a passion, but he also loves winged wonders. In last few years, he has travelled the length and breadth of India and around the globe in search of Mandar Godbole ‘the perfect shots’. Apart from photography, he is also a regular blogger, writing photo-blogs based on his experiences in the wild. He has translated 3 books related to nature and wildlife from English to Marathi and hopes to continue to do the same. |SP

Smart Photography August 2018

Tanah Lot Temple, Bali

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www.smartphotography.in

Camera: Canon EOS 550D Aperture: f/10 Shutter Speed: 1/250 sec ISO: 100


The Perfect Mara Sunset

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II Aperture: f/8 Shutter Speed: 1/160 sec ISO: 100

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II Aperture: f/8 Shutter Speed: 1/250 sec ISO: 100

www.smartphotography.in

Smart Photography August 2018

The Lake From Paradise Gosausee Austria

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Smart Photography August 2018

Carnival at Eiffel

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Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II Aperture: f/22 Shutter Speed: 4.8 sec ISO: 100

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II Aperture: f/8 Shutter Speed: 1/400 sec ISO: 100

The Perfect Holiday Spot, Maldives

www.smartphotography.in

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II Aperture: f/22 Shutter Speed: 1/60 sec ISO: 100


The Mighty Kanchenjunga

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II Aperture: f/8 Shutter Speed: 1/1000 sec ISO: 200

Smart Photography August 2018

The Magic Of Bharatpur

The Lone Wandered at Desert National Park

Camera: Canon EOS 7D Mark II Aperture: f/8 Shutter Speed: 1/40 sec ISO: 1000

www.smartphotography.in

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Camera: Sony Alpha 7R II Lens: Sigma ART 24-105mm F/4 Aperture: f/8 Shutter Speed: 1/13 sec ISO: 100 Aloneness

Smart Photography August 2018

In Natures Lap

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Rajesh Jyothiswaran, is a self taught photographer. It was by chance he realised his own latent photography skills, when a smartphone photo of his native plant garden in the suburbs of Dallas, Texas went viral which then led to the purchase of his Rajesh Jyothiswaran first D-SLR. His interests range from macro to astro, although landscape and astrophotography in places rarely captured excite him the most. Photography has taken him on a path of self-discovery, learning, and meaningful friendships across the world. His images have been displayed at several exhibitions, he has also won several awards for his work including the 2017 International Landscape Photographer of the Year Top 101 award, and a Top 10 finalist in the Smithsonian 15th Annual Photo Contest. Born and raised in India, Rajesh lives in North Texas with his wife and two daughters. He aspires to continue growing as an artist and be a source of inspiration to others. Yo can reach him at: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheLadyBugFarm/ Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ ladybugfarmimages/ Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/rajeshj/ 500px: https://500px.com/rajeshjyothiswaran Website: https://www.2020px.com/

www.smartphotography.in

Camera: Sony Alpha 7R II Lens: Sigma ART 12-24mm f/4 DG HSM | Art 016 with MC-11 adapter Aperture: f/22 Shutter Speed: 1/2 sec ISO: 100


The Fairest One of All

Camera: Sony SLT-A99V Lens: Sony 16mm f/2.8 Fisheye Aperture: f/2.8 Shutter Speed: 20sec ISO: 4000

Smart Photography August 2018

Mountain Pride

www.smartphotography.in

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Dancing With The Stars

Flat Earth

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Camera: Sony Alpha 7R II Lens: Zeiss Batis 25mm f/2 Aperture: f/2.8 Shutter Speed: 13 sec ISO: 10000

Smart Photography August 2018

Needles and the Haystack

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Camera: Sony Alpha 7 II Lens: Sigma ART 24-105mm f/4 with LA-EA3 adapter Aperture: f/16 Shutter Speed: 1/2 sec ISO: 50

www.smartphotography.in

Camera: Sony Alpha 99 Lens: Sony 16mm f/2.8 Fisheye (SAL16F28) Aperture: Æ’/3.5 Shutter Speed: 30s ISO: 2500


Camera: Sony Alpha 7 II Lens: Zeiss Batis 18mm f/2.8 Aperture: ƒ/22 Shutter Speed: 1/4sec ISO: 50

House on the Hill

Camera: Sony Alpha 7R II Lens: Sony Vario-Tessar T* FE 16-35mm f/4 ZA OSS Aperture: f/16 Shutter Speed: 1/80 sec ISO: 50 Wild Trinity

Camera: Sony Alpha 7R II Lens: Sony Vario-Tessar T* FE 16-35mm f/4 ZA OSS Aperture: ƒ/16 Shutter Speed: 1/25 sec ISO: 50

www.smartphotography.in

Smart Photography August 2018

Great American Dawn

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SE aran A WC isw

Rush

O th SH h Jyo s

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www.smartphotography.in

Camera: Sony 7RII Lens: Sigma ART 12-24 f/4 with MC-11 Adapter Aperture: f/22 Shutter Speed: 1/6 sec ISO: 50


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AN ey M S T RAF ms

RC Vika E T S MA an t

Ke

Exquisite Landscapes As told to Mystica Vora

Smart Photography August 2018

CA Ketan Vikamsey is a practicing Chartered Accountant with a standing of over twenty five years. He is a passionate natural history photographer with an exemplary flair for capturing big cats with as much passion as an eloquent landscape across the breadth of mother earth. A prolific traveller, Ketan Ketan Vikamsey has travelled to over twenty countries including the US, Europe, Scandinavia, Russia and Iceland. A mentor at the fastest growing travel and wildlife photography academy “DCP Expeditions LLP”, Ketan is passionate about sharing his experience in photography and travel to budding photography enthusiasts!

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What made you fall in love with photography? I’ve had a creative bent of mind since my childhood. Photography has enamoured me from an early age, when I used to click photos with an AGFA point and shoot film camera. Along with photography, I show keen interest in other creative fields like Bonsai, the art of miniaturising trees, collection of art and crafts artefacts, etc. I bought my first D-SLR camera five years ago and thereafter there has been no looking back. I started with wildlife and macro photography and slowly bent towards the art of landscape photography. My interest in photography currently rests with shooting big cats, feline animals, waterscapes, landscapes, seascapes and architecture. Travel photography also interests me. As a CA, I believe, your profession would consume most of your time. www.smartphotography.in

How do you find the time to pursue your passion for photography? True. CA profession is quite time consuming. However, right since the beginning, I had a passion for travelling, which I have now combined with photography. Therefore, taking additional time out is not new for me. Additionally, to practice photography, I go out with friends on weekends/sundays, which is personal time for me.

What are the points to consider before you press the shutter release? The factors I consider before releasing the shutter are:

a. Light: If the light is not good, I don’t release the shutter. Ideally, early mornings and late evenings are best for photography. b. Composition: If I am in a spot where I am unable to make a good composition, I don’t release the shutter. In landscapes, I wouldn’t mind walking long distances, just to


get that right composition of the same scene. In wildlife photography where physical movement is restricted due to rules of national parks, I would manoeuvre my vehicle to the extent possible to get the right balance of composition and light. c. Clear back ground: Any type of clutter in the background is a non-

starter for good photography. I try to overcome it, either with a very shallow depth of field with a wide open aperture or avoid shooting images with clutter in the background.

d. Strong subject or foreground: Having a strong element in the foreground is a given. Without a strong

subject or without having a strong foreground, I don’t consider it fit to release the shutter.

e. Capturing the moment: Wildlife and travel photography is all about capturing the right moment. If you missed the right moment, you have lost a golden opportunity, which may, or often may not come back. It is said www.smartphotography.in

Smart Photography August 2018

Š Ketan Vikamsey

Akranes Light House, Iceland

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© Ketan Vikamsey

Ke

Kirkjufellsfoss, Iceland

Smart Photography August 2018

© Ketan Vikamsey

KuangSi Waterfalls, Luang Prabang, LAOS

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www.smartphotography.in


© Ketan Vikamsey

Skogafoss, Iceland

Smart Photography August 2018

© Ketan Vikamsey

Skogafoss Aerial View, Iceland

www.smartphotography.in

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© Ketan Vikamsey

Ke

Godafoss, Iceland

Smart Photography August 2018

© Ketan Vikamsey

Ice Lagoon, Iceland

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Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon, Iceland

© Ketan Vikamsey

© Ketan Vikamsey

Blue Lagoon, Iceland

Smart Photography August 2018

© Ketan Vikamsey

Kirkjufell, Iceland

www.smartphotography.in

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Tapu (Island) Scape, Jim Corbett National Park

RC Vika E T S MA an t

© Ketan Vikamsey

Ke

that no two moments in photography would ever be the same, be it the right moment of emotion, action, golden light or blue hour lighting, which if lost, is lost forever.

Smart Photography August 2018

Which photographers have inspired you the most? I have been primarily inspired by photographers closer home. To name a few, Uncle Ronnie, Dr. Caesar Sengupta, Kane Lew, Ganesh Shankar, Ashok Mansur, Kalyan Varma, Amit Rane, Yuwaraj Gurjar and Bobby Joshi. Other photographers that inspire me are Serge Ramelli, Elia Locardi, Daniel Cheong and Steve McCurry.

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What is your opinion on postprocessing once the image has been captured? Reasonable post-processing in my opinion is a must to bring out the life in the image. Excessive play of post processing or digitally modifying the image from what you actually captured is not something that I do or like. It is the person behind the camera that takes the picture. Even then, how important, according to you is the equipment? www.smartphotography.in

Equipment is an enabler. Equipment is a tool, which the photographer combines with his techniques to bring out the magic in the image. Several photographers capturing the same subject from the same place and under similar circumstances are bound to come out with multiple perspectives in the images they have captured. The captured images speak volumes about the photographer and his personality. The person behind the camera is the most important, according to me. I therefore respect people with basic equipment, but who demonstrate exemplary skills when it comes to capturing an image.

Could you give the readers of Smart Photography some advice on photography? Pursue: I would suggest readers who are passionate about photography to pursue their passion seriously. Active: Complacency has no place in photography. Don’t be complacent of waking up early, walking miles or travelling to the right location at the right time for that one perfect image.

Don’t shy away from your equipment: In this era of smartphone

photography, a passionate photographer should not shy away from travelling with his equipment and accessories. Serious photography calls for dedication and dedication always comes with carrying your gear wherever you travel.

Practice: Keep looking out for opportunities and keep clicking images, which will sharpen your skills. Try new techniques closer to home, learn from them and avoid making mistakes when you are travelling far and away, which can prove pretty expensive in terms of losing time and opportunity. Keep learning: Learning is a continuous process. Keep learning, keep making mistakes, but learn from those mistakes. Pleasure: In the end, photography gives immense pleasure to the photographer as well as to those viewing the images. Life gives immense opportunities to capture the moments. Don’t shy away from hard work and labour when it comes to serious photography. Be happy and make others happy through your photographs. |SP


Jaisalmer

SMART TRAVEL

SHOT

RAJASTHAN -

Picture Courtesy: Himanshu Vats

THE LAND OF KINGS Smart Photography August 2018

Major Attraction:

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From the ancient palaces of Jaipur to the sand dunes of Jaisalmer, Rajasthan has a treat for everyone and draws a large number of tourists from all over the globe. Rajasthan’s history can be divided into two parts – the various clans and the rural flavours of the state. www.smartphotography.in

A haven for architectural lovers, Rajasthan houses some of the best monuments of the world. The Amber Palace, Castle Mandawa, Fort Delawara, Hawa Mahal, City Palace in Udaipur, Khimsar Fort, Jaisalmer Fort and Ummaid Bhawan Palace are few in the long list of archaeological marvels. The

following five destinations should be on your ‘mustvisit’ list:

Jaipur: This ‘Pink City’ of India gets its name from the distinctive pink colour of its buildings. Forts, monuments, temples, gardens, museums and the vast markets offer a major attraction to the

tourists who come from all around the world to explore Jaipur’s food and culture of this wonderful city. Ideal destinations for a must visit are Hawa Mahal, Jal Mahal, Jantar Mantar, Jaigarh Fort, Albert Hall Museum, Birla Temple, Govind Dev ji Temple and Pink City Bazaars. Some nearby


Ghaat Pushkar

Picture Courtesy: Devesh Kalla

BEST TIME TO VISIT: Summer - April to June. Monsoon - July to September. Winter - October to March. HOW TO REACH : By Road: The national highway of Rajasthan is 5655 km while the state highway is 8627 km. NH8 passes through Jaipur and Udaipur. A four-lane highway connects Agra to Jaipur.

Umaid Bhawan Palace, Jodhpur

destinations are Samode, Dundlod, Jhujhunu, Deeg, Alwar, Dausa, Shekhawati, Mandawa, Bharatpur, Bhangarh, Abhaneri, Sariska National Park and Neemrana. Udaipur: This city is famous for Rajputana style architecture and is known as the ‘Venice of the East’ and has a lot to offer to its visitors. Major attractions are City Palace, Lake Pichola, Lake Palace, Shilpgram, The Royal Vintage Car Museum, Moti Magri, Lake Garden Palace, Saheliyon ki Bari and Bagore ki Haveli. The citiy is well planned and known for its hospitality with lots of monuments and palaces.

Nearby places for a visit are Nathdwara, Rajsamand, Haldoghati, Ranakpur, Kumbhalgarh and Mount Abu. Jodhpur: This ‘Sun City’ enjoy its bright sunny weather throughout the year. Various hill forts, palaces and the ancient walled city are just a handful of attractions. Mustvisit places to visit nearby Jhodpur are Khimsar, Pali, Nagaur, Ranakpur, Osian and Phalodi. Adding to the glamour of Jodhpur are its stunning handicrafts, folk dances, folk songs and also the brightly dressed people. The city is known for its amazing winter fairs and festivals like Marwar festival, Nagaur fair,

Picture Courtesy: Lt Col Pankaj Jain

and Jodhpur international kite festival. These events offer you a taste of the culture of this part of India.

Jaisalmer: This ‘Golden City’ derives its name from the golden sand and the goldcoloured sandstone used in the city’s architecture. The city is famous for its heritage, unique architecture, havelis and the Thar Desert. Some of the major attraction for tourists are, Jaisalmer Fort, Bada Bagh, Patwon-ki-Haveli, Sam Sand Dunes, Thar Heritage Museum, Gadisar Lake and Nathmal Ki Haveli. Nearby places to visit are Kuldhara, Khuri, Lodhruva and Barmer.

By Air: Regular flights are available from Delhi and Mumbai to Jaipur, Jodhpur and Udaipur.

SMART TRAVEL

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Bikaner: This ‘Camel Country’ is famous for producing the best riding camels in the world. It is also famous for its savoury ‘Bikaneri Bhujia’ as well as for its sweets. It is also known for its handicrafts, leather articles and for having the biggest camel farm of Asia. The city is known for its intricately carved ‘jharokas’. Some of the major tourist attractions are Junagarh Fort, Lalgarh Palace, ICARNational Research Centre on Camel and Sadul Singh Museum. Other nearby places for a visit are Deshnoke, Nagaur, Khimsar, Salasar and Churu. |SP www.smartphotography.in

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By Rail: Railway network enables the state to easily connect with the rest of the country. However, there are direct links from major cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad and Bangalore.

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Beautiful Belles Sean Archer started his photography using natural light at his own home and without any expensive gear. In two years, he went from being an absolute beginner to internationally published professional photographer. Now he is the most popular photographer at Sean Archer 500px.com with 180 million views. His works have been featured on covers of photography magazines from all around the world. He is a brand ambassador for Olympus and a two time winner of ‘Best of Russia’ photo contest.

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Majestic Macros! Š Amish Parekh

Compiled by Sujith Gopinath & Rohinton Mehta

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he monsoons bring nature alive. For various lesser life forms on earth, it is the season for awakening, birth and courtship. It is also the season for revival and renewal, not only of these life forms, but also the nature enthusiasts impatiently waiting for the moment. It is time to unpack your rain-wear, get those macro gear out of the closet, sharpen your eyes and prepare to get wet. There is a colourful world out there waiting to be discovered, for it can only be spotted by a keen-eyed macro photographer. Let us show you a few macro images that we feel, would trigger your passion for the macro world. |SP

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© Sonal Patil

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Love for Landscapes Compiled by Sujith Gopinath & Rohinton Mehta

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will make way for beautiful blue skies with white cumulus clouds floating across the landscape. It is time to get your photography gear and explore. Capture the beautiful spectacle that nature presents itself. Some of us might be wondering what to shoot, how to frame, what angle to shoot and so forth. Here are a few images to get you started in your quest for that captivating landscape image. |SP

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he monsoons are finally here, and the greenery is back. Lakes are full, streams are alive and puddles are in abundance. The rains have transformed the urban landscape too. Concrete structures, dirty grass facades and dusty roads have been washed clean. The haze has cleared, the terrains lit with diffused light and the sky is grey and threatening with nimbus clouds. Soon, these clouds

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Š Prasad Malgaonkar


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Š Sangram Govardhane


Ask your question to Uncle at sp@nextgenpublishing.net

Ask Uncle

Ronnie Nikon D500

OK button

Live View

Exposure Simulation Mode I am using a Nikon D500. Does it have Exposure Simulation mode for still images? If yes, how do I set it?

Ramesh K. T. via email

The Nikon D500 can be set for Exposure Simulation. Set the camera to Manual exposure mode. Enable Live View. Then press the OK button. Now the effect of changing the shutter speed can be seen on the screen when you rotate the rear command dial; when you change the aperture using the front command dial, you will notice the change in the depth of field. Pressing the OK button again will disable the Exposure Simulation.

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Mixed Queries

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I have decided to buy a D-SLR/ Mirrorless camera. I have three questions: a) Should I buy a D-SLR or a Mirrorless model? b) Should I buy a crop sensor model or a full frame? c) Can one see image quality difference between a APS-C model and a full-frame model? A. R. D’souza, Goa

Welcome to the world of confusion! www.smartphotography.in

a) The answer could differ depending on whom you ask. Many D-SLR users like the heft and the larger size of the camera; Mirrorless camera users appreciate the lower weight and smaller size. Personally, I am not too concerned about the larger size of the D-SLRs, but I do like the lower weight of the Mirrorless models. That there being no mirror in the Mirrorless models, means that the loss of sharpness due to the mirror slap is avoided. To counteract this, some D-SLRs (not all) have a mirror lock-up mode, but again, it is not very convenient to use this mode unless your camera is on a tripod. There are some other differences too but you cannot go wrong with either type of camera.

b) Here too, the answer will depend on whom you ask. For a fair comparison, we will compare two cameras, both, say, 24-megapixel (with mirror or without mirror is not important in this case) – one APS-C sensor model and the other, a full frame model. Due to the ‘apparent extra reach’ of the APS-C model (due to the crop factor), the image appears larger; you get the feeling that the picture has been shot using a longer focal length lens. Well, you could also crop the full frame image to the size of the APS-C image; but in doing that you lose almost half the megapixels! Advantage, APS-C.

The full frame model will have larger photosites (remember, we are comparing two cameras with the same megapixel rating). This means that the full frame sensor will capture more light, resulting in reduced digital noise and better

dynamic range. Advantage, full frame.

How large are you going to print? If your prints are regularly going to be large (say, 20 x 30” or larger), you may be better off using a full frame model.

Please know that your individual skills in shooting and post-processing will also count; and so will the quality of the lenses that you use. For example, if you use a high-end lens with a APS-C sensor camera (and your shooting skills are perfect/next to perfect), it is possible to have better image quality when compared to a full frame sensor camera used with an inferior lens (and possibly not as good shooting skills).

And don’t forget the Analog to Digital Converter used in the camera. Needless to say, a better A to D Converter in an APS-C model could possibly result in better image than having an inferior A to D Converter in a full frame model.

c) Assuming that both the cameras are high-end, assuming that equal care is taken during the shoot, assuming that files from both the models are postprocessed with equal care, assuming that images from both the models are of reasonable size, you are not likely to notice any discernable difference in image quality with pictures shot in good light using low ISO between the APS-C and the full frame model. When using high ISOs in poor light, the full frame model will win in terms of digital noise and dynamic range.

Personal suggestion As you have noticed from the above, things can get pretty muddled when you try to go deep in such discussions.


Samsung Galaxy S9+

Mobile Phone Camera

Which mobile phone would you suggest under Rs.40,000? My main intention for a mobile phone is the camera that I can have with me the entire time. Subodh Gupta, Kanpur

Within INR 40K, you could consider OnePlus 6 (first choice) or Honor 10 or Asus Zenfone 5z. While these camera phones may not give you stellar performance, I believe these are the best considering your budget. OnePlus 6

Honor 10

Smartphones Vs D-SLRs? Smartphones these days claim to produce D-SLR-quality images. How far is this true? Why should someone buy a D-SLR if smartphone cameras are so good? V. N. Iyer, via e-mail

Smartphone cameras are certainly improving, and these days you get competent smartphone cameras that give nearperfect images under favourable lighting conditions. Since AMOLED displays of smartphones provide a much higher dynamic range and resolution compared to that of computer screens, the images displayed on a smartphone screen appears almost flawless. But under low light and high-contrast situations, the image quality cannot be compared to D-SLRs. The greatest advantage of a smartphone camera is its convenience. If you need a camera that you can always carry with you, there is no better option than a smartphone. It might replace compact point-andshoot cameras, but for high-end professional work, we do not think that smartphones will replace larger sensor cameras in the near future. Both the devices have different utilities and hence both are likely to coexist for a long time.

Flowing Water

I want to photograph flowing water and make it look silky smooth. I tried various shutter speeds but none of my photos appear like some I see in books and magazines. Can you please guide me? Suresh M. N. via email

Here are some tips.

1. Set your camera to the lowest ISO possible. Asus Zenfone 5z

2. Try your shots when the light

Huawei P20 Pro

is not strong. If you shoot when the light is strong, you will need Neutral Apple iPhone X Density filters to prolong the shutter speed.

3. In the absence of ND filters, you may try using a Polarising filter – that will reduce the light entering the lens by about 1.5 stops.

4. Use a firm tripod. Set your camera to Aperture Priority mode and try narrow apertures like f/16, f/22. The camera will automatically select the required shutter speed.

The final effect will depend on various factors, like how fast the water was moving, how far away from the flowing water were you, the shutter speed that the camera selected and to some degree, the focal length used. Hence try various shots. |SP

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Smart Photography August 2018

I am not saying that you should not get technical; but buying equipment according to our needs (and considering the costs) is the right way to go about it. Not everyone has the need for the most sophisticated equipment. I believe in the saying “cut your cloth according to the measurement”.

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Ashok Kandimalla

The author, Ashok Kandimalla has been in the photographic field for over three decades and has extensive experience in both film and digital photography. Being an electronics engineer by profession and a photographer, he possesses a unique and deep insight into the technical aspects of digital photography and equipment. He has published more than a 100 articles on photography and some of his writings have also been published in the wellknown international magazine Popular Photography. An avid collector of photographic books and vintage cameras, Ashok has a keen interest in the history of photography and a passion for sharing his knowledge on photography through teaching and writing. He is presently working as a Management and Engineering consultant. He can be reached at kashokk@gmail.com.

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hotographing a small sized subject is an urge every photographer feels within a short time after taking up photography. Typically, these subjects could be those that are found in nature - like flowers, butterflies, insects, or manmade objects like, jewels, watches, small antiques, etc. In addition, you can find several interesting patterns, textures etc. of minute size even in a large object. The genre of photography which deals with photographing small subjects has three categories - close up photography, macro photography and photomicrography.

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Extension tubes and bellows operate on the principle of extension. That, is they put extra space between the lens and sensor plane to achieve magnification. Consequently, they need exposure correction. Since every modern camera

Picture 4: Same lens focused at 1:2 (½X). Note how the lens is now extended. In some macro lens, the extension takes place internally inside the barrel and the lens may not externally extend. However, the principle is the same.

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andscape photography is the supreme test of the photographer – and often the supreme disappointment. - Ansel Adams

Everyone loves landscapes – well, at least most people do. If you love nature, you are bound to travel and travel offers great opportunities for captivating landscapes. There are those who take landscape shots while travelling and there are those who travel for landscape shots! For the former, capturing landscapes is not their priority; for the later, capturing landscapes is their priority. So, how should one go about capturing nature’s beauty? In this short writeup, I’ll offer tips that can make your landscape images worth the time and effort.

Let’s face it. Landscape photography is not for everyone. Landscape photography is a challenge! Its first demand is that you get out of your comfort zone. If you are looking for comfort, look elsewhere. Besides loving nature, the landscape photographer should be willing to be at the location even before the sun pops its head from behind the mountains. And in the evenings, he/ she should be willing to stay out late after the sun sets. Landscape photography is best done in the early mornings and late evenings – the so-called ‘golden hour’ (but also depends on your location and the weather conditions). The angular, soft to medium soft to semi-hard light that nature provides at these times can enhance your photographs. Remember, what you www.smartphotography.in

are capturing is not the mountains and the valleys; you are capturing the light! If the light is dull, your pictures will look drab; if the light is harsh, you’ll end up with overexposed highlights and deep detail-less shadows. Patience is a virtue that you must possess as a landscape photographer. Are you willing to wait till your subject is optimally illuminated or do you go snap-happy and ‘finish-the-job’ irrespective of whether the scene is properly lit or not? Only you can answer this question. Also note that as a landscape photographer, you need to be in good health; after all, you are likely to carry a heavy kit-bag (about 8-10 kilograms) and a tripod!

Creating Impact

Landscapes can be shot throughout the year. Sunrise, sunsets, rains, storms, the sky threatening to fall, mist, fog, rainbows, strong dramatic clouds are examples of landscapes that can create visual appeal. Shoot in Raw instead of JPEG, as Raw offers several benefits over JPEG. Maintain a boy-scout attitude. This means that you should do your homework and be prepared. Find out from friends and/or the internet, the details of the place you decide to visit. Find out how you will reach your destination (your transport), how long will the journey take, where will you stay (if you decide on overnight journey), how is the weather likely to be; anything else that will make you comfortable. Decide on the equipment that you’ll

carry. This is not as easy as it seems. Too much weight will bog you down and also create problems during the travel. For landscapes, a wideangle lens (prime or zoom) should be your first consideration. This does not mean that landscapes cannot be taken using telephoto lenses; I always include a medium telephoto lens when on landscape trips.

carried is the one that you might need the most!

Scout your location “A good photograph is knowing where to stand” said Ansel Adams. Ideally, you should do a reconnaissance one day prior to your actual shoot. Jot down the positions/time of the day from where you should shoot.

Use a Tripod Though lugging a tripod is a pain in the neck, its advantages far exceed the disadvantages. A good tripod allows you to shoot at very slow shutter speeds without fear of camera shake which could result in fuzzy images. A tripod also slows you down, which in this case allows you to better frame your shots.

Use Mirror Lock-up If your camera permits it, lock up the mirror on your D-SLR after focussing and framing the scene. Mirror induced vibrations can also rob you of the sharpness that your lens is capable of. If your camera does not offer mirror lock-up, use a 2-3 second delay on the self-timer. Where should you focus? Many photographers set the focussing to infinity when shooting landscapes. This is wrong. The best method is to gauge the distance between the camera and the closest point in the scene that you want sharp and then double that distance. For example, if the closest point you want in focus is, say, 12 feet,

you should set the focus point at 24 feet and then set the lens aperture to f/11 or f/16 for excellent sharpness from close-by to infinity. Keep in mind that you do not have to take a tape measurement – just use your judgement.

Look for an interesting foreground element Though we see in three dimensions (width, height and depth), our photographs have only two dimensions (width and height). The third dimension – depth – is lacking. To create depth in your images, look for an interesting element in the foreground. This could be a rock, a stump of a tree, a fallen tree branch, a human being or an animal, some sort © Dhritiman Lahiri

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Picture 3: A Zeiss Makro Planar lens focussed at Infinity.

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Recollect that there will be loss of light due to extension. Consequently, there will be a change in the effective speed of the lens. Modern macro lenses tell the camera the actual speed depending on the extension. If your camera has an aperture display, you can see that an f/2.8 macro lens when focussed to 1:1 will show a lens speed of around f/5.6, a drop of two stops. Don’t panic as your lens is just telling you the truth!

Note: Nikon calls their macro lenses as “Micro” lenses and Zeiss calls them as “Makro” lenses. This is just a question of nomenclature.

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Principles for getting higher magnifications: Close up and macro photography involve photographing subjects with high magnification. So, how do you get higher magnification (which needs shorter subject distance

Macro Lenses: These have a special focussing mechanism (helical) that greatly extends the optics (Pictures 3 and 4) away from the sensor plane so that you can focus very close to the subject. This in turn allows you to take pictures with high magnification. A lens can really be called a macro lens when it can give a magnification of at least ½X Zoom Lenses with Macro capability: or more. In fact, most modern macro Practically every DSLR is sold with a lenses go from infinity right up to 1:1 kit zoom lens included. Most of these continuously without any break. This kit lenses are capable of providing continuous range is a unique property a reproduction ratio of 1:4. So, with of all macro lenses. Also, macro lenses these lenses, you will land up with are optimised to give excellent Picture 2: A picture taken with a zoom with “macro” capability. The magnification here is about 1/4X. Such images are possible with a standard kit or a tele zoom lens performance at without any accessories. very short subject distances unlike non-macro lenses. Equipment for macro photography: The following details several types of devices that help you to do close up and macro photography.

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If you want to travel light, consider an APS-C sensor camera or the Micro Four Thirds System.

Suggested lenses: On a full-frame sensor body: 16-35mm/1835mm, 20/24/28/35mm prime, 24-70mm, 100/135mm, Fisheye. On an APS-C sensor body: 1855mm, 10-20mm, 50mm.

Keep in mind that ultra-wide-angle lenses are difficult to use and chances are that the lens that you have not

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By Extension: As the lens is moved away (called extension) from the sensor (focal) plane it projects a larger image. Thus, greater the extension, greater will be the magnification. One important factor you should remember is that the intensity of light drops (that is less light reaches the sensor) as you move the lens away from the sensor plane. Why does that happen? The answer is, though the amount Picture 1: Magnification ratio. The left column shows size of the image on the sensor and the right the actual subject size. The corresponding of light entering the lens is magnification ratios are also shown. the same, you are distributing it over a larger area as you move the lens away. The amount light Close up photography refers to images loss depends on the extension. For that are taken at reproduction ratios example, an extension that gives you of 1:20 (magnification of 1/20X) to 1X magnification will cause a light loss 1:2 (½X). For macro photography, the of two stops. Larger extensions give corresponding figures are - 1:2 to 25:1. higher magnifications with even greater Photography beyond 25:1 is referred to loss of light. as photomicrography.

By Optics: You can also get greater magnification by adding optics in front of your camera lens. Here in essence what you are doing is similar to what a person does when he puts on reading glasses! You are simply enlarging the image by putting a magnifying glass in front of your lens! As you will see there are several ways you can do this - but the principle is the same.

Macro lenses are available in several focal lengths starting from 35mm to 200mm. Longer focal length macro lenses give the same magnification at a larger subject to camera distance and hence are useful for nature photography. After all you would not want to photograph a venomous snake or a biting insect from 2 inches! However, shorter focal length lenses are useful for certain applications like document copying. A macro lens is the most versatile of all macro hardware. Also, macro lenses are flexible enough to be used for other applications. For example, a 100mm macro lens will make an excellent portrait lens.

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Second-Hand Photo Equipment Rohinton Mehta

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hotography is a muchloved hobby worldwide. To many, it is a profession. Our tools are the camera bodies, lenses, flash-guns, and literally, hundreds (or probably, thousands) of accessories. As technology improves, manufacturers introduce newer and fancier equipment. And just like everything else in life, equipment costs go up time and again. The reasons for increasing costs of photo goods could be the takeover of the compact camera market by smartphones; the manufacturers had no choice but to increase the prices of other equipment to make up for that loss. If you are a professional, you could offset the costs against the profits you make. But if you are not earning enough out of your profession, or if you are a non-professional for whom photography is only a hobby, one way out is to buy second-hand equipment.

There are dealers who mainly deal in second-hand goods. They even buy your old equipment or part-exchange it for another used item. A disadvantage of buying second-hand equipment is that, generally, you don’t get any warranty. Here’s another hitch. Modern equipment (especially camera bodies) are complex machines and not everyone is in a position to know whether the item he/she

is trying to purchase is in good working order. With that in view, here are some guidelines to help you steer away from possibly buying a lemon.

Check the item for scratches or dents or other signs of abuse. A scratched or dented camera body/ lens could mean that the user was not careful with his equipment. Use a magnifying glass to check the externals for dirt. Some dirt is likely to be present (unless the owner has never used the item), but this little check also gives us a general idea about how careful the owner was.

When buying a lens (new or old), ensure that the lens is designed to be used on the camera body you possess. Some camera bodies have an in-built motor for autofocus but not all bodies. If the lens that you buy does not have an AF motor (and the body does not have it too), you will have to settle for manual focus only!

When buying a second-hand camera body, it is a good idea to check the shutter actuations. Do not depend on what is told to you; check this using Photoshop or specialised software that actually show the number of times the shutter has been released. Most D-SLRs for example, have a shutter life guarantee of 1.5 lacs actuations, so if you find that a camera body that you intend to buy has already fired a good number of

frames, you are in a better position to decide or bargain on the price. Note: It does not mean that a camera will die out after the shutter actuation guarantee is reached. Most camera bodies will continue to work after reaching the specified limit. If possible, photograph the sky using the narrowest aperture (f/16 generally). Check the image at 100% enlargement on your computer. Any dust settled on the imaging sensor will be seen as blurry spots. Some dust will eventually find its way to the sensor but if you find no dust marks, it will tell you that the owner has had the sensor cleaned.

Try to find out how often the imaging sensor has been cleaned. I think it is more important to know who has done the cleaning! The imaging sensor is the heart of the camera body and careless cleaning of the sensor is worse than not cleaning it at all. Speaking for myself, I would not buy a camera body (or even a lens) that is not attended by the Company owned official service station.

Check how the owner has been storing his equipment; has he been storing the camera body/ lens in his cupboard along with his clothes and other things? Clothes are hygroscopic in nature (they absorb moisture from the air) and photo equipment stored in cupboards/drawers etc are likely to be infested with fungi.

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For you get to a good understanding of what these mean, you need to know the terms magnification and reproduction ratio. Both these indicate the ratio of the size of the image on the sensor to the size of the actual subject. If the image and the subject are of the same size, then the reproduction ratio is 1:1 and the magnification is 1X. Reproduction ratio of 1:1 is also referred to as ‘life” size. If you photograph a subject and it appears twice as large on the sensor, then we say the magnification is 2X and the reproduction ratio in this case will be 2:1. If image is half as large as the subject, then the magnification is ½X and reproduction ratio is 1:2 (Picture 1).

for a given focal length?) There are essentially two principles to achieve this – by Extension and by Optics.

an area coverage of approximately 96mm X 72mm (on a camera with APS size sensor) at the shortest focussing distance. On the other hand, you must realise that the macro capability of your “macro” zoom (as most zooms are tagged these days) is not truly macro. This is because when you say macro, the magnification should go to at least ½X. However, they can be useful in a pinch and are excellent to get your feet wet in close up photography (Picture 2).

now has through the lens (TTL) metering, the meter sees the same light as what the sensor sees and hence this light loss is compensated for.

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Learnings

Smart Photography has been continually receiving requests to start a basic course for beginners. With this in mind, we have asked a very knowledgeable photographer from Chennai to take over writing these articles. We have also requested him to be as jargon-free as it is possible, so that newcomers to photography feel comfortable to pursue the hobby.

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Smart Photography has been continually receiving requests to start a basic course for beginners. With this in mind, we have asked a very knowledgeable photographer from Chennai to take over writing these articles. We have also requested him to be as jargon-free as it is possible, so that newcomers to photography feel comfortable to pursue the hobby.

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Ashok Kandimalla

The author, Ashok Kandimalla has been in the photographic field for over three decades and has extensive experience in both film and digital photography. Being an electronics engineer by profession and a photographer, he possesses a unique and deep insight into the technical aspects of digital photography and equipment. He has published more than a 100 articles on photography and some of his writings have also been published in the wellknown international magazine Popular Photography. An avid collector of photographic books and vintage cameras, Ashok has a keen interest in the history of photography and a passion for sharing his knowledge on photography through teaching and writing. He is presently working as a Management and Engineering consultant. He can be reached at kashokk@gmail.com.

Macro Photography P

Smart Photography August 2018

hotographing a small sized subject is an urge every photographer feels within a short time after taking up photography. Typically, these subjects could be those that are found in nature - like flowers, butterflies, insects, or manmade objects like, jewels, watches, small antiques, etc. In addition, you can find several interesting patterns, textures etc. of minute size even in a large object. The genre of photography which deals with photographing small subjects has three categories - close up photography, macro photography and photomicrography.

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For you get to a good understanding of what these mean, you need to know the terms magnification and reproduction ratio. Both these indicate the ratio of the size of the image on the sensor to the size of the actual subject. If the image and the subject are of the same size, then the reproduction ratio is 1:1 and the magnification is 1X. Reproduction ratio of 1:1 is also referred to as ‘life” size. If you photograph a subject and it appears twice as large on the sensor, then we say the magnification is 2X and the reproduction ratio in this case will be 2:1. If image is half as large as the subject, then the magnification is ½X and reproduction ratio is 1:2 (Picture 1). www.smartphotography.in

for a given focal length?) There are essentially two principles to achieve this – by Extension and by Optics.

By Extension: As the lens is moved away (called extension) from the sensor (focal) plane it projects a larger image. Thus, greater the extension, greater will be the magnification. One important factor you should remember is that the intensity of light drops (that is less light reaches the sensor) as you move the lens away from the sensor plane. Why does that happen? The answer is, though the amount Picture 1: Magnification ratio. The left column shows size of the image on the sensor and the right the actual subject size. The corresponding of light entering the lens is magnification ratios are also shown. the same, you are distributing it over a larger area as you move the lens away. The amount light Close up photography refers to images loss depends on the extension. For that are taken at reproduction ratios example, an extension that gives you of 1:20 (magnification of 1/20X) to 1X magnification will cause a light loss 1:2 (½X). For macro photography, the of two stops. Larger extensions give corresponding figures are - 1:2 to 25:1. higher magnifications with even greater Photography beyond 25:1 is referred to loss of light. as photomicrography. Principles for getting higher magnifications: Close up and macro photography involve photographing subjects with high magnification. So, how do you get higher magnification (which needs shorter subject distance

Extension tubes and bellows operate on the principle of extension. That, is they put extra space between the lens and sensor plane to achieve magnification. Consequently, they need exposure correction. Since every modern camera


By Optics: You can also get greater magnification by adding optics in front of your camera lens. Here in essence what you are doing is similar to what a person does when he puts on reading glasses! You are simply enlarging the image by putting a magnifying glass in front of your lens! As you will see there are several ways you can do this - but the principle is the same.

an area coverage of approximately 96mm X 72mm (on a camera with APS size sensor) at the shortest focussing distance. On the other hand, you must realise that the macro capability of your “macro” zoom (as most zooms are tagged these days) is not truly macro. This is because when you say macro, the magnification should go to at least ½X. However, they can be useful in a pinch and are excellent to get your feet wet in close up photography (Picture 2).

Macro Lenses: These have a special focussing mechanism (helical) that greatly extends the optics (Pictures Equipment for macro photography: 3 and 4) away from the sensor plane The following details several types of so that you can focus very close to the devices that help you to do close up and subject. This in turn allows you to take macro photography. pictures with high magnification. A lens can really be called a macro lens when Zoom Lenses with Macro capability: it can give a magnification of at least ½X Practically every DSLR is sold with a or more. In fact, most modern macro kit zoom lens included. Most of these lenses go from infinity right up to 1:1 kit lenses are capable of providing continuously without any break. This a reproduction ratio of 1:4. So, with continuous range is a unique property these lenses, you will land up with of all macro lenses. Also, macro lenses are optimised to give excellent Picture 2: A picture taken with a zoom with “macro” capability. The magnification here is about 1/4X. Such images are possible with a standard kit or a tele zoom lens performance at without any accessories. very short subject distances unlike non-macro lenses.

Recollect that there will be loss of light due to extension. Consequently, there will be a change in the effective speed of the lens. Modern macro lenses tell the camera the actual speed depending on the extension. If your camera has an aperture display, you can see that an f/2.8 macro lens when focussed to 1:1 will show a lens speed of around f/5.6, a drop of two stops. Don’t panic as your lens is just telling you the truth!

Macro lenses are available in several focal lengths starting from 35mm to 200mm. Longer focal length macro lenses give the same magnification at a larger subject to camera distance and hence are useful for nature photography. After all you would not want to photograph a venomous snake or a biting insect from 2 inches! However, shorter focal length lenses are useful for certain applications like document copying. A macro lens is the most versatile of all macro hardware. Also, macro lenses are flexible enough to be used for other applications. For example, a 100mm macro lens will make an excellent portrait lens.

Note: Nikon calls their macro lenses as “Micro” lenses and Zeiss calls them as “Makro” lenses. This is just a question of nomenclature.

Picture 3: A Zeiss Makro Planar lens focussed at Infinity.

Picture 4: Same lens focused at 1:2 (½X). Note how the lens is now extended. In some macro lens, the extension takes place internally inside the barrel and the lens may not externally extend. However, the principle is the same.

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Smart Photography August 2018

now has through the lens (TTL) metering, the meter sees the same light as what the sensor sees and hence this light loss is compensated for.

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Extension Tubes and bellows: Both these provide increased magnification by moving (extending) the lens away from the sensor plane. Here are some more details for you regarding these two.

Extension Tubes: These are hollow tubes with no optics in them. They are mounted between the camera body and the lens. The newer designs support auto diaphragm, autofocus and auto exposure operations. They come in fixed lengths like, 8mm, 15mm, 25mm, etc. They can be used individually or together to support various but fixed magnifications. As they are rigid, they cannot support continuously variable extension or magnification. However, they are quite popular due to the ease of use and low cost. Bellows: These are made of leather and give continuously variable extension, thus giving tremendous flexibility. However, they are cumbersome to use especially in the field and usually do support auto diaphragm. Due to these reasons bellows are not very popular despite their versatility.

Formula to find out the magnification for a given extension is rather simple and is given below:

Magnification = (Extension in mm divided) ÷ (focal length of the lens in mm) As an example, if you use an extension of 150mm (6in) with a 50mm lens, then the magnification will be 150 ÷ 50 = 3X. As you can see from this formula, you can get higher magnification for the same extension by using a shorter focal length (wide-angle) lens.

Supplementary (Close-up) lenses: Supplementary lenses look like filters and hence are sometimes called closeup filters. They are compact and easy to use as you just screw them in front of your camera lens (called primary lens) like a filter. Importantly, none of the autofocus and auto-exposure functions are disturbed. There is also no loss of light as is the case with extension tubes or bellows. So, the convenience factor is very high with these. When used with long focal length lenses they can provide the same magnification as what extension tubes (or bellows) can provide but with greater subject distance (Picture 5) and less problems in general. The strength of a supplementary lens is defined by the term “dioptre”. The dioptre is nothing but the number

Picture 5: A picture taken with a Nikon 70-300 VR zoom paired with a Canon 500D, an achromat supplementary lens. The long focal length helped to get a comfortable subject distance.

A supplementary lens has the property of changing the infinity focus distance of the primary lens always to the same distance which is the focal length of the supplementary lens. This is true regardless of the focal length of the primary lens. As an example, if you use a 2D supplementary lens (focal length = 500mm) on any primary lens, then the infinity focus of the primary lens will now be 500mm. Magnification when using supplementary lenses can be calculated as –

Magnification = (Focal length of the primary lens) ÷ (focal length of supplementary lens) For example, if you use a 2D (focal length = 500mm) supplementary lens on a 300mm primary lens, the magnification will be 300 ÷ 500 = 0.6X or little larger than ½X.

From this formula you can also see that you will get higher magnifications if you use primary lenses with longer focal lengths and / or supplementary lenses with higher dioptres (shorter focal lengths). Note that this formula assumes that the primary lens is focussed at infinity. In practice you can get higher magnification as your primary lens itself can extend for closer focussing. Supplementary lenses can be constructed with a single optical element or two optical elements. The latter type is called an “achromat” supplementary lens. These give far superior sharpness but are expensive and very few are available in the market.

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you get by dividing 1000 by the focal length. So, a 500mm supplementary lens will have a strength of 2 dioptres and is referred to as 2D. Supplementary lenses are offered by manufacturers with different dioptre values (generally from 1 to 5) and are very good for magnifications up to about 1X. They are ideal for subjects like butterflies (which are constantly on the move) when paired with a good tele-zoom of 70-300mm focal length that has IS / VR.

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To get more strength, you can


• Use a small aperture – around f/11 • The primary lens must be of good quality

• Use only achromat supplementary lenses

• Do not stack supplementary lenses

Stacked lenses: Here the principle is same as that you have seen when using a supplementary lens but the supplementary lens is replaced with another photographic lens which is called the secondary lens. Note that the primary and secondary lenses are

mounted front to front. This is done with the help of a macro coupler (also called male-to-male coupler). This is just a ring (Picture 6) with male threads on both sides. With this you can reverse the secondary lens and fix it to the primary lens which in turn is fixed to the camera. So, if you are having primary and secondary lenses with 62mm and 52mm filter diameters, then you need 62mm to 52mm macro coupler. This will allow the secondary lens to be reversed and mounted on the primary lens. Stacked lenses work best with primary lenses of focal length between 100 to 200mm and secondary lenses with focal length around 50mm. The formula for magnification is same as when you use a supplementary lens. So, if you are using a primary lens of 200mm and secondary lens of 50mm lens you will get a magnification of 4X.

Another interesting fact is that, you are mounting the secondary lens to the front of your primary lens and not to your camera body. Hence, the secondary lens need not be compatible with your camera at all. Picture 6: Stacked lenses You can for example, use a using a macro coupler Nikon camera with a Nikon (see arrow mark). primary lens and a Canon lens as the secondary lens. The author suggests scouting around for low cost used screw mount lenses like old Pentax lenses that can be used for this purpose.

Picture 7: A lens mounted in reverse with the help of a lens reversing ring (see arrow mark).

camera make. You can mount this ring to the camera just as you would mount a lens. You then screw a lens to the other side of the ring. Of course, for this to work the filter thread of the lens must match the thread of the reversing ring. For example, if you buy a Nikon reversing ring with 52mm thread, you can mount it on a Nikon body and screw in any lens (regardless of the make) that has a 52mm filter size. This method gives excellent quality for magnifications around 2X at a very low cost (Picture 8). Higher magnifications are possible if you keep extension tubes or bellows between the camera body and the reversing ring. There are a few limitations that you need to be aware. First, the focussing mechanism of the lens cannot be used. So, you need to focus by moving the camera back and forth. Also, no auto exposure or metering is possible unless your camera has some specific features. Auto diaphragm too will not work. So, you need to open the aperture, focus and then close the aperture for metering and taking the picture.

Tripods for macro work: The tripod is a key component for getting quality close up and macro images. As you will be working at very high magnifications camera shake will be amplified. So,

Tip: Always keep the aperture fully open on the stacked lens for brightest viewing. Also remember that exposure is controlled only by the aperture of the primary lens.

Lens Reversing Ring: Here you mount a lens that is reversed with the help of a “reversing ring” (Picture 7), directly on to the camera body. This ring on one side has a male thread and on the other side has a mount just like that of a lens. So, this ring is specific to each

Picture 8: Not a missile but just the tip of a felt pen! Taken with a normal 50mm lens reversed (Picture 7). The magnification here is about 2X.

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Smart Photography August 2018

stack two or more supplementary lenses together. However, this is not recommended as the quality will suffer. In case you wish to do so, mount the higher powered close up lens first and next the lower powered one, to the former. Supplementary lenses (used singly), contrary to their poor reputation, can produce excellent quality images. In fact, many professionals use them. Just make sure that you practice the following:

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being a specialized field has some idiosyncrasies that you need to be aware of. These are:

1. Reducing camera movement and vibration

Picture 9: A macro flash.

a very sturdy tripod is a must. Macro photography infield will involve work close to the ground. Thus, it will help if you have a tripod that can go close to the ground. Else, you can use a good table top tripod.

Flashes and Flash accessories for Macro Photography: The built-in flash (or shoe mounted flash) of your camera is practically of no use for lighting a very close subject as the lens will obstruct the light casting a shadow. Hence, if you need to use a flash, which is often needed in macro photography due to the small apertures needed, you need to think of a way where you can direct light on to the subject. The most popular ways are:

Smart Photography August 2018

• Off Camera Flash: If your shoe mounted flash supports wireless TTL, then you can put it to good use by deploying it off camera. This will help you to light a close by subject quite well.

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• Ring and Macro Flashes: These are circular in shape and are mounted on the front of the lens with an adapter. Ring lights give shadow less lighting and hence the image looks a bit flat. A better but more expensive solution is a macro flash (Picture 9) which has two small flashes mounted on a ring that is fixed to the front of the lens. Since there are two lights whose power and position can be varied, better modeling and contrast is achieved. Both ring and macro flashes can also be fully dedicated to provide the same level of automation as shoe mounted flashes. Continuous ring and macro lights (LED type) are also available. Important issues regarding macro photography: Macro photography www.smartphotography.in

2. Focussing

3. Depth of Field

4. Keeping planes parallel

Reducing camera movement and vibration: Due to the high magnifications (around and greater than 1X) involved, even the slightest shake or vibration will reduce the sharpness of the image drastically. Here are a few techniques that help you to reduce these problems.

• Keep the camera steady: At high magnifications (approaching 1:1 and beyond) a tripod is a must, even if your lens or camera has some sort of shake reduction mechanism.

• Release the shutter carefully: To prevent hand shake, use a cable switch or an IR remote to release the shutter. An alternative is to use the self timer. The disadvantage is that you cannot control the exact time of release. This can be a problem in the field as at the time of shutter release a gust of wind can move a flower for example, resulting in an unsharp image.

• Reduce the mirror vibration: If you are using a DSLR then the movement of mirror can cause vibration reducing the sharpness. This vibration is most prominent at a certain range of shutter speeds. This range varies from camera to camera but is generally from ¼ to 1/15 sec. Try as much as possible to avoid this range of speeds by varying aperture and ISO. If your camera has the mirror lock-up (MLU) or the live view feature, activate it as this will raise the mirror and keep it static when the shutter is released, thus greatly reducing the vibrations. An alternative is to use what is called the “Mirror pre-release” or “Exposure Delay” mode. In this mode, the mirror rises when you press the shutter release but the shutter will open only after a short

delay (about a second) thus allowing time for the mirror induced vibrations to die down.

Focussing: This is one of the most critical issues in macro photography due to the fact that magnification is high and consequently the depth of field is very shallow. In fact, it is insignificant as you will see shortly. Hence, any error in focussing will result in an unsharp picture. Also, as you go in for high magnifications, the image in the viewfinder becomes very dark due to extensions and other factors. This makes focussing even more difficult. Autofocussing is also not possible many times due to the low light reaching the autofocus sensor. Hence, you may have to use manual focussing at times. Here are a few ways of overcoming the focussing problems mentioned.

• Focus bracketing: Take a series of images each with slightly different focus. Later you can pick the best one or you can stack them together as you will see shortly. There is nothing you will lose with this as you can simply discard those images that you do not want.

• Use Live View Mode: An LCD monitor presents a brighter view compared to the optical finder of a DSLR. If needed, you can even turn up the brightness of the monitor. Make sure you switch on the magnifier option and select the area of interest before you do critical focussing. Using Live View has another benefit too if you are using AF. If the AF point indicated in the viewfinder is not overlapping the part of interest, then you will have to recompose after focussing. This can cause focussing errors, even if the shift is just a few milli-meters. With live view you can set the focus point anywhere in the frame and thus you can avoid recomposing. In case you are using manual focus, you can enlarge the area of interest. This helps you to focus accurately.

Depth of field (DOF): DOF is extremely limited in macro photography due to the high magnifications involved. Also, DOF will be the same for a given magnification regardless of the focal length of the lens you are using, as it is independent of focal length. DOF at high magnifications will be divided


evenly before and after the focus point. DOF at 1X magnification and an aperture of f/16, is just about 2mm! That is, only that part of the subject one mm before and one mm after the focus point will be in sharp focus. This clearly shows why focussing is of such critical importance in macro photography.

image will be in focus while another will be out of focus and unsharp. As you have seen at high magnifications DOF will be of the order of few millimeters or even less. So, a deviation of one or even a fraction of a milli-meter will cause a part of the image to appear unsharp if you do not take care of this aspect. Tip: Unfortunately trying to keep the planes parallel is easier said than

done. Here is a tip to help you. Keep with you a flat card board (or a book) with you and place it flush with the front (that is the face) of the lens. This will help you to see easily if the sensor plane (which in turn is parallel with the face of the lens) is parallel to the subject or not.

A “What to buy” guide: Table I helps you to plan the purchase of your equipment based on your needs. |SP

Best suited equipment for occasional use

Best suited equipment for frequent use

Large flowers

Standard or tele zoom lens with “macro” capability.

Macro lens.

Tele / zoom lens (~300mm) with a supplementary lens of higher power.

Macro lens, preferably of focal length greater than 100mm for nature, tripod.

Large jewelry, clocks, smaller flowers

Smaller jewelry like rings, gems, watches, butterflies, insects, small flowers, electronic parts Small insects, parts of watches and jewelry, parts of flowers, etc.

Picture 10:

a. Subject and Sensor (Image) plane are parallel. Plane X - Y (which is the subject plane) will be in focus

b. Subject and Sensor plane are not parallel here. Plane X - Y will not be in focus fully

The usual temptation for photographers is to increase DOF by stopping down. However, you will start losing overall sharpness as you stop down beyond a certain point, (normally around f/11 or f/16) due to diffraction effects. So, avoid apertures smaller than this. The best way to increase DOF is to go for a software solution called focus stacking. To use this technique, you take a series of images at several focus points, one behind the other and merge them to get practically unlimited DOF. Photoshop has such a feature. Keeping planes parallel: You need to make sure that the subject plane and the plane of the sensor (also called the image plane) are absolutely parallel (Picture 10). Otherwise, one part of the

Standard or tele zoom lens with a supplementary lens.

Macro lens.

Telephoto or normal lenses plus extension tubes, tripod.

Macro lens, preferably of focal length greater than 100mm for nature, plus extension tubes, tripod.

High magnification work Wide angle or normal (greater than 2X and up lenses, reversing ring, to 8X) extension tubes, macro coupler for stacked lenses (needs a telephoto as the primary lens), tripod.

Wide angle / macro lenses on bellows, telephoto lenses with Raynox type supplementary lenses, reversing ring, macro coupler for stacked lenses, very steady tripod.

CONCLUSION Close up and more so macro photography is technically very demanding. You need to exercise extreme care as any sloppiness in technique will get amplified and will result in a mediocre picture. You need to keep the camera absolutely steady and focus accurately. Plus, you need to keep the subject plane perfectly parallel to the sensor plane. At the same time remember that macro photography is an art form and hence the artistic aspects cannot be ignored. As with anything in photography, practice is needed to hone the techniques. www.smartphotography.in

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Your Application

All text, diagrams and images © Ashok Kandimalla unless otherwise mentioned.

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Landscape Photography Rohinton Mehta

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andscape photography is the supreme test of the photographer – and often the supreme disappointment. - Ansel Adams

Smart Photography August 2018

Everyone loves landscapes – well, at least most people do. If you love nature, you are bound to travel and travel offers great opportunities for captivating landscapes. There are those who take landscape shots while travelling and there are those who travel for landscape shots! For the former, capturing landscapes is not their priority; for the later, capturing landscapes is their priority. So, how should one go about capturing nature’s beauty? In this short writeup, I’ll offer tips that can make your landscape images worth the time and effort.

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Let’s face it. Landscape photography is not for everyone. Landscape photography is a challenge! Its first demand is that you get out of your comfort zone. If you are looking for comfort, look elsewhere. Besides loving nature, the landscape photographer should be willing to be at the location even before the sun pops its head from behind the mountains. And in the evenings, he/ she should be willing to stay out late after the sun sets. Landscape photography is best done in the early mornings and late evenings – the so-called ‘golden hour’ (but also depends on your location and the weather conditions). The angular, soft to medium soft to semi-hard light that nature provides at these times can enhance your photographs. Remember, what you www.smartphotography.in

are capturing is not the mountains and the valleys; you are capturing the light! If the light is dull, your pictures will look drab; if the light is harsh, you’ll end up with overexposed highlights and deep detail-less shadows.

Patience is a virtue that you must possess as a landscape photographer. Are you willing to wait till your subject is optimally illuminated or do you go snap-happy and ‘finish-the-job’ irrespective of whether the scene is properly lit or not? Only you can answer this question. Also note that as a landscape photographer, you need to be in good health; after all, you are likely to carry a heavy kit-bag (about 8-10 kilograms) and a tripod!

Creating Impact

Landscapes can be shot throughout the year. Sunrise, sunsets, rains, storms, the sky threatening to fall, mist, fog, rainbows, strong dramatic clouds are examples of landscapes that can create visual appeal. Shoot in Raw instead of JPEG, as Raw offers several benefits over JPEG.

Maintain a boy-scout attitude. This means that you should do your homework and be prepared. Find out from friends and/or the internet, the details of the place you decide to visit. Find out how you will reach your destination (your transport), how long will the journey take, where will you stay (if you decide on overnight journey), how is the weather likely to be; anything else that will make you comfortable.

Decide on the equipment that you’ll

carry. This is not as easy as it seems. Too much weight will bog you down and also create problems during the travel. For landscapes, a wideangle lens (prime or zoom) should be your first consideration. This does not mean that landscapes cannot be taken using telephoto lenses; I always include a medium telephoto lens when on landscape trips. If you want to travel light, consider an APS-C sensor camera or the Micro Four Thirds System.

Suggested lenses: On a full-frame sensor body: 16-35mm/1835mm, 20/24/28/35mm prime, 24-70mm, 100/135mm, Fisheye. On an APS-C sensor body: 1855mm, 10-20mm, 50mm.

Keep in mind that ultra-wide-angle lenses are difficult to use and chances are that the lens that you have not


Use a Tripod Though lugging a tripod is a pain in the neck, its advantages far exceed the disadvantages. A good tripod allows you to shoot at very slow shutter speeds without fear of camera shake which could result in fuzzy images. A tripod also slows you down, which in this case allows you to better frame your shots.

Where should you focus? Many photographers set the focussing to infinity when shooting landscapes. This is wrong. The best method is to gauge the distance between the camera and the closest point in the scene that you want sharp and then double that distance. For example, if the closest point you want in focus is, say, 12 feet,

you should set the focus point at 24 feet and then set the lens aperture to f/11 or f/16 for excellent sharpness from close-by to infinity. Keep in mind that you do not have to take a tape measurement – just use your judgement.

Look for an interesting foreground element Though we see in three dimensions (width, height and depth), our photographs have only two dimensions (width and height). The third dimension – depth – is lacking. To create depth in your images, look for an interesting element in the foreground. This could be a rock, a stump of a tree, a fallen tree branch, a human being or an animal, some sort © Dhritiman Lahiri

Scout your location “A good photograph is knowing where to stand” said Ansel Adams. Ideally, you should do a reconnaissance one day prior to your actual shoot. Jot down the positions/time of the day from where you should shoot.

Use Mirror Lock-up If your camera permits it, lock up the mirror on your D-SLR after focussing and framing the scene. Mirror induced vibrations can also rob you of the sharpness that your lens is capable of. If your camera does not offer mirror lock-up, use a 2-3 second delay on the self-timer.

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carried is the one that you might need the most!

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Use wide-angle lens for an impact A wide-angle lens is not just to capture a wide vista. Use it to create depth. Using a wide-angle lens, go close to the foreground element.

Lead the viewer into the image A method to create a feeling of depth is to use leading lines in your composition. Try not to have the leading lines enter through a corner of the frame. Also keep in mind, not to place the far-away end of the leading line come close to the top of the frame.

Horizon Try not to place the horizon passing through the centre (or nearly the centre) of the frame. Doing so divides the image into

two equal parts and is considered as wrong. However, if your subject is symmetrical in shape, you may allow the horizon to pass through the centre of the frame.

Watch the Background Pay attention to the background. If there is anything that could draw the viewer’s attention to the background, consider another viewpoint or find some way out that will not draw the attention to the background. A cluttered background, especially if it is sharp, will draw the viewer’s attention away from the main element.

Also consider the Rule of the Thirds. If there is drama in the sky (beautiful © Dhritiman Lahiri

Consider using slow shutter speeds There are situations when using slow shutter speeds can enhance your photo as you can see here. Since the ‘right’ shutter speed depends on certain parameters (how far / how much the flowing water is, the focal length that you are using), you should try a couple of different shutter speeds.

This will distort the shape of the close-up element. This does not matter, in fact it adds to the strong composition.

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of pattern or anything that attracts the eye.

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colours and clouds), consider 2/3 area for the sky and 1/3 area for the foreground. On the other hand, if there is drama in the foreground (something interesting is going on there), consider 2/3 area for the foreground and 1/3 for the sky.

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Note: A bald sky never makes for an interesting sky. A plain blue sky is better than a bald grey sky, but it is still not as good as a colourful sky with nice fluffy clouds.

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Post Processing Learn the art of post-processing. A Raw file can be processed differently to create different moods. For example, you can create a warm or cold or a neutrallooking image from the same file by changing the White Balance. You could create a sharp image or you could make the same image dreamy. The choice is yours. Ansel Adams quotes “You don’t take a photograph, you make it”. How true! |SP


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Second-Hand Photo Equipment Rohinton Mehta

If you are a professional, you could offset the costs against the profits you make. But if you are not earning enough out of your profession, or if you are a non-professional for whom photography is only a hobby, one way out is to buy second-hand equipment.

There are dealers who mainly deal in second-hand goods. They even buy your old equipment or part-exchange it for another used item. A disadvantage of buying second-hand equipment is that, generally, you don’t get any warranty.

Here’s another hitch. Modern equipment (especially camera bodies) are complex machines and not everyone is in a position to know whether the item he/she

is trying to purchase is in good working order. With that in view, here are some guidelines to help you steer away from possibly buying a lemon.

Check the item for scratches or dents or other signs of abuse. A scratched or dented camera body/ lens could mean that the user was not careful with his equipment. Use a magnifying glass to check the externals for dirt. Some dirt is likely to be present (unless the owner has never used the item), but this little check also gives us a general idea about how careful the owner was.

When buying a lens (new or old), ensure that the lens is designed to be used on the camera body you possess. Some camera bodies have an in-built motor for autofocus but not all bodies. If the lens that you buy does not have an AF motor (and the body does not have it too), you will have to settle for manual focus only!

When buying a second-hand camera body, it is a good idea to check the shutter actuations. Do not depend on what is told to you; check this using Photoshop or specialised software that actually show the number of times the shutter has been released. Most D-SLRs for example, have a shutter life guarantee of 1.5 lacs actuations, so if you find that a camera body that you intend to buy has already fired a good number of

frames, you are in a better position to decide or bargain on the price. Note: It does not mean that a camera will die out after the shutter actuation guarantee is reached. Most camera bodies will continue to work after reaching the specified limit. If possible, photograph the sky using the narrowest aperture (f/16 generally). Check the image at 100% enlargement on your computer. Any dust settled on the imaging sensor will be seen as blurry spots. Some dust will eventually find its way to the sensor but if you find no dust marks, it will tell you that the owner has had the sensor cleaned.

Try to find out how often the imaging sensor has been cleaned. I think it is more important to know who has done the cleaning! The imaging sensor is the heart of the camera body and careless cleaning of the sensor is worse than not cleaning it at all. Speaking for myself, I would not buy a camera body (or even a lens) that is not attended by the Company owned official service station.

Check how the owner has been storing his equipment; has he been storing the camera body/ lens in his cupboard along with his clothes and other things? Clothes are hygroscopic in nature (they absorb moisture from the air) and photo equipment stored in cupboards/drawers etc are likely to be infested with fungi.

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Smart Photography August 2018

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hotography is a muchloved hobby worldwide. To many, it is a profession. Our tools are the camera bodies, lenses, flash-guns, and literally, hundreds (or probably, thousands) of accessories. As technology improves, manufacturers introduce newer and fancier equipment. And just like everything else in life, equipment costs go up time and again. The reasons for increasing costs of photo goods could be the takeover of the compact camera market by smartphones; the manufacturers had no choice but to increase the prices of other equipment to make up for that loss.

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equipment and then decide. Some may agree, some may not (I would certainly not agree; I wouldn’t risk someone using my equipment because it is easy to misuse it without even knowing it).

A lens with fungi or a dirty lens is an indication that the owner has not been careful with his equipment

Smart Photography August 2018

Check the lens for fungi. Take the lens out from the body and look at a bright bulb or tube-light through the lens. Ensure that the aperture blades are open to the maximum limit when you check. If you are checking a zoom lens, then check for fungi at all focal lengths. If there is fungi (or dust or scratches), you will be able to notice it. Avoid buying such lenses. If the owner offers to reduce the price and suggests that you have the lens cleaned against the discount that he is giving you, please avoid this at all costs. Keep in mind that a lens that is infected with heavy fungi can show marks on the glass where the fungi has eaten up the lens coatings!

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Check if all the camera features are working properly. This is easier said than done. Modern cameras have too many features, and unless you are an expert, you are unlikely to know how to check them (even an expert could sometimes fail to notice if a particular feature is not working satisfactorily).

Check whether the focussing and zooming rings turn smoothly without jerky movement. Lenses stored in very low relative humidity can have the internal lubrications dried and this can www.smartphotography.in

If you are not familiar with the item you intend to purchase second-hand, I suggest you take a friend who understands the use of that item. If there is any doubt in your mind about the equipment that you wish to buy second-hand, don’t buy. If something should go wrong after you purchase, you are likely to blame the original owner. In such cases, you are likely to create enmity with the seller.

make the focussing/ zoom rings stiff. (Lenses should best be stored at a relative humidity between 40 and 45%).

Second-hand cameras and lenses that have the original box packing sometimes fetch better prices because the buyer thinks that the seller has kept/used the equipment with greater care.

Conclusion

Its always best to buy new equipment. New equipment come with a warranty (mostly two years). When you buy secondhand equipment past that period, there is no warranty. Consider your purchase against the amount you are likely to spend. Buying from someone you know personally is a safer bet than buying second-hand from someone you do not know.

A safe thing to do is to ask the owner if you can test the

In India, second-hand market for photo goods does not exist. Resale prices are poor. Avoid buying second-hand from websites that have dubious reputation. So, to sum up, keep in mind that buying second-hand could be a problem, especially if you are not technically sound. We hope that this tiny write-up saves you your hardearned money! |SP


92 96 100 104 106 108 109 Mirrorless Review Sony Alpha 7 III

Canon EOS 1500D

Mirrorless Review Fujifilm X-T100

Lens Review

Sony E 10-18mm F/4 OSS

Lens Review

Yongnuo YN35mm F/2N

First Look

Moza Mini-Mi smartphone gimbal

Change in Rating System Smart Photography’s new rating system exercises stricter evaluation in view of improvements in the overall performance of photographic equipment. Marks will be awarded for the following parameters...

Final Rankings Recommended ......................................... 75-80% Best Buy .........................................81% and above

Reviews

D-SLR Review

First Look

Vanguard Veo II 264 CB tripod

D-SLR CAMERAS

LENSES

COMPACT CAMERAS

Design & Build Quality .................... (out of 20)

Design & Build Quality .................... (out of 20)

Design & Build Quality .................... (out of 20)

Key Features........................................... (out of 20)

Key Features........................................... (out of 20)

Key Features........................................... (out of 20)

Ergonomics ............................................. (out of 20)

Ergonomics ............................................. (out of 20)

Ergonomics ............................................. (out of 20)

Performance Autofocus ....................................................(out of 5) Metering ......................................................(out of 5) Noise control ...........................................(out of 5) Distortion/Sharpness..........................(out of 5) LCD/Viewfinder.....................................(out of 5) Auto White Balance...........................(out of 5)

Performance Autofocus ....................................................(out of 5) Sharpness.....................................................(out of 5) Distortion control .................................(out of 5) Aberrations ................................................(out of 5) Darkening of corners.........................(out of 5) Extra Features............................................(out of 5)

Performance Autofocus ....................................................(out of 5) Metering ......................................................(out of 5) Noise control ...........................................(out of 5) Distortion/Sharpness..........................(out of 5) LCD/Viewfinder.....................................(out of 5) Auto White Balance...........................(out of 5)

Value for Money ....................... (out of 10)

Value for Money ................................. (out of 10)

Value for Money ....................... (out of 10)

Grand Total ............................... (out of 100)

Grand Total ......................................... (out of 100)

Grand Total ............................... (out of 100)


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Inside the Box ✓ AC Adaptor AC-UUE12 ✓ Accessory shoe cap ✓ Body cap ✓ Eyepiece cup ✓ Micro USB cable ✓ Rechargeable Battery NP-FZ100 ✓ Shoulder strap

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ony has been aggressively releasing its digital cameras over the past few years and the Alpha series of full frame mirrorless cameras are hot favourites. Sony’s portfolio of Alpha mirrorless full frame cameras is confusingly diverse—one for high resolution (Alpha 7R), another for speed (Alpha 9), yet another for high sensitivity (Alpha 7S), and of course, a general purpose ‘jack of all trades’ called Alpha 7. The Alpha 7 III is the third generation of this all-purpose camera.

Design and Build Quality

The Alpha 7 III is built similar to the other Alpha full frame cameras. Subtle differences exist with the Alpha 7 II, especially the AF-ON button replacing the function button and a thicker grip to accommodate the bigger battery. It has a sturdy metal body with a matte finish. The body is made comparatively weather-resistant with special sealing at crucial places. However, it is not completely sealed from the elements and so we wouldn’t suggest that you take the camera out in a downpour. The camera has metal lens mount and tripod receptacle.

Key Features

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The 24.2 megapixel Sony Alpha 7 III uses a 35 mm full frame (35.6×23.8 mm) Exmor R Back-side Illuminated CMOS sensor along with a BIONZ X processor. The camera uses an optical filter with charge protection coating and image sensor shift mechanism for dust reduction. The Alpha 7 III is compatible with FE-designated Sony E-mount lenses. The camera uses Fast Hybrid AF, which employs both phase-detection and contrast-detection methods to achieve focus. Phase-detection uses up www.smartphotography.in

Sony Alpha 7 III

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1,64,990 body only

Sujith Gopinath

Alpha for Enthusiasts to 693 AF points that cover almost the entire sensor area for improved tracking speed and predictability. Focus modes available are AF-A (Automatic AF), AF-S (Single-shot AF), AF-C (Continuous AF), DMF (Direct Manual Focus) and Manual Focus. The 4D focus feature allows better tracking speed while shooting unpredictably moving subjects. The camera uses 1200-zone evaluative metering method, providing Multisegment, Centre-weighted, Spot, Spot Standard/Large, Entire Screen Average and Highlight priority metering modes. Exposure can be compensated up to +/5.0EV in 1/3 or 1/2 EV steps. Exposure bracketing is available. Still images are recorded in Raw (14 bit, uncompressed available) or JPEG format (simultaneous Raw and JPEG possible)

at maximum dimensions of 6000 x 4000 pixels. JPEG compression options include Extra fine, Fine and Standard. The camera can shoot continuously at up to 10 frames per second at the best quality. At this rate, it can capture up to 163 JPEG Large and Extra fine images, up to 40 uncompressed Raw frames or up to 36 Raw (uncompressed) + JPG images. The Alpha 7 III uses an electronically-controlled, vertical-traverse, focal-plane shutter that provides Shutter speeds from 30 to 1/8000 seconds along with Bulb. Videos are recorded at 1/4 to 1/8000 seconds. Silent shooting is available. The Alpha 7 III uses sensor-shift image stabilisation with 5-axis compensation. Sony claims a 5-stop shutter speed advantage while using this feature. The Alpha 7 III does not feature a built-in


Smart Photography August 2018

Mahesh Reddy

Aperture: f/8 Shutter Speed: 1/800sec ISO: 800

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flash, but can accept a compatible Sony Alpha system flash via the multiinterface shoe (hot-shoe). Shutter synchronises with the flash at 1/250 seconds or lower shutter speeds. Flash exposure can be compensated up to +/3.0 EV. Flash modes available are Off, Auto, Fill-flash, Slow Sync., Rear Sync., Red-eye reduction (on/off), Wireless and Hi-speed sync. Self timer can be set to 10, 5 or 2 seconds.

Videos are recorded in XAVC S or AVCHD format at up to 4K: 3840 x 2160 (30p, 24p) quality. Shooting available are Auto (iAuto), Programmed AE (P), Aperture priority (A), Shutter-speed priority (S), Manual (M), Movie, Slow & Quick motion (S&Q) and Scene selection. Scene selection modes include Portrait, Sports Action, Macro, Landscape, Sunset, Night Scene and

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Night Portrait. Movie shooting modes include Programmed AE (P), Aperture priority (A), Shutter-speed priority (S) and Manual (M). Sensitivity ranges from ISO 100 to 51,200, which can be extended from ISO 50 to 204,800. White Balance options are Auto, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Incandescent, Fluorescent (Warm White, Cool White, Day White, Daylight), Flash, Underwater, Colour Temperature (2500 to 9900K) and Custom. The camera provides anti-flicker shooting, Zebra and Peaking functions. The Alpha 7 III can detect up to eight faces. Face Priority can be used for AF and Metering.

The Alpha 7 III uses a 2,359,296-dot, 0.5-inch XGA OLED colour electronic viewfinder. The finder displays digital level gauge and histogram along with the regular information. The main

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screen is a 3.0-inch, 921,600-dot Touch TFT, which can be tilted up by approximately 107 degrees and down by approximately 41 degrees. Touch focus is available. The camera has a dual card memory slot. One of these accepts only SD/SDHC/SDXC memory cards (UHS-I/II compliant), while the second accepts either an SD/SDHC/SDXC card or a Memory Stick PRO Duo/PRO-HG Duo. The camera features Wi-Fi, NFC and Bluetooth for wireless connectivity and has a Micro USB terminal,a Type-C USB terminal, a HDMI micro connector (Type-D), a 3.5 mm Stereo minijack and a vertical grip connector. The Alpha 7 III is powered by an NP-FZ100 rechargeable battery pack (supplied). It can be charged via USB and also with the supplied charger. The camera

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Ergonomics

The Alpha 7 III has a deep and thick grip, with a textured rubber finish. This provides excellent grip, though you need to balance the camera by supporting the lens, as is the case with all Sony Alpha full frame models. The monitor displays crisp images, but it produced strong moire patterns in fine patterns most of the time. The EVF has low resolution than optimal. The camera allows you assign 12 functions to available buttons and dials.

Performance

We received the camera along with the FE 24-70 mm f/2.8 G Master lens. Autofocus was fast and precise and could latch on to the subject even under low light. All metering modes worked as expected.

The Alpha 7 III produces images with native print size of 20 x 13.33 inches at 300 ppi. At 25 percent of the screen size, images were absolutely noise-free up to ISO 6400 and remained usable all the way up to ISO 51,200. Viewed at 50 percent, the images remained free of noise up to ISO 1600 and were again usable up to ISO 51,200. Though luminance noise was observed at this point, there was no trace of chroma noise. The images also maintained sharpness. Zoomed to 100 percent, the images were noise-free up to ISO 400 and could be used up to ISO 3200. Chroma noise is a major factor that spoils the usability of an image, and Sony has managed to keep it to a minimum. Auto White Balance reproduced colours true to the original under most lighting conditions. Though we observed prominent warm cast under incandescent light, we wouldn’t worry too much since incandescent lights do not produce consistent colours. The cast could be easily removed in post processing. The camera produced sharp images with the supplied lens. 4K videos were smooth. You can adjust the AF drive speed to High, Medium or Low so that there is smooth transition while capturing images.

Value for Money

The Sony Alpha 7 III body retails at an MRP of Rs.164,990. The camera is also available as a kit along with the FE 28–70 mm F3.5–5.6 OSS lens for Rs. 179,990. We feel that this price is fair for this camera. |SP

KEY SPECIFICATIONS

Lens compatibility: Sony E-mount lenses Effective pixels: 24.2 million Image sensor: 35 mm full frame (35.6×23.8 mm), Exmor R CMOS sensor Dust reduction: Charge protection coating on optical filter and image sensor shift Image formats: Still: JPEG, Raw (Sony ARW 2.3 format) Max. pixel dimensions: 6000 x 4000 pixels JPEG compression: Extra fine, Fine, Standard 14bit Raw: Yes Uncompressed Raw: Yes Video format: XAVC S, AVCHD Best video: 4K: 3840 x 2160 (30p, 24p) Card slots: Dual Media: Memory Stick PRO Duo/PRO-HG Duo, SD/SDHC/SDXC memory card (UHS-I/ II compliant) AF type: Fast Hybrid AF (phase-detection AF/contrast-detection AF) Max. AF points: 693 (phase-detection AF) Focus modes: AF-A (Automatic AF), AF-S (Single-shot AF), AF-C (Continuous AF), DMF (Direct Manual Focus), Manual Focus Metering method: 1200-zone evaluative metering Metering modes: Multi-segment, Centreweighted, Spot, Spot Standard/Large, Entire Screen Avg., Highlight Exposure compensation: +/- 5.0EV (1/3 EV, 1/2 EV steps selectable) Exposure bracketing: Available Shooting modes: Auto (iAuto), P, A, S, M, Movie, Slow & Quick Motion, Scene Viewfinder: 2,359,296-dots 0.5-inch XGA OLED colour electronic viewfinder, Monitor: 3.0-inch, 921,600-dot Touch TFT Shutter speed: Still images: 30 to 1/8000 sec, Bulb; Movies: 1/4 to 1/8000 sec Flash X-sync speed: 1/250 seconds Silent shooting: Available Image stabilisation: Sensor-Shift mechanism with 5-axis compensation Battery: NP-FZ100 battery pack (supplied) USB Power Supply: Yes Weight: Approx. 650 g Dimensions (W x H x D): Approx. 126.9 mm x 95.6 mm x 73.7 mm

FINAL SCORE

81%

Design and Build Quality17/20 Key Features

16/20

Ergonomics

18/20

Performance Autofocus Metering Noise Control Sharpness LCD/EVF Auto WB

4/5 4/5 4/5 4/5 3/5 3/5

Sub-Total

22/30

Value for Money

PLUS

8/10

MINUS

• Great grip • Not completely • Excellent build quality weather-sealed • 12 customisable • EVF could have functions

• Excellent noise

been better

control

• Sharp images

VERDICT The Sony Alpha 7 III is the all-purpose sibling of the high-resolution Alpha 7R III and the high-speed Alpha 9. The camera has enough resolution to meet the requirement of most users and is fast enough for most subjects except wildlife and sports. If you are not an advertising professional who requires world-beating resolution nor a wildlife or sports photographer who requires micro-second response, you will certainly like the Alpha 7 III. It is also significantly less expensive compared to these. www.smartphotography.in

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weighs 650g with battery and memory card and measures 126.9 mm x 95.6 mm x 73.7 mm (W x H x D).

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Inside the Box ✓ AC Adaptor AC-UUE12 ✓ Accessory shoe cap ✓ Body cap ✓ Eyepiece cup ✓ Micro USB cable ✓ Rechargeable Battery NPFZ100 ✓ Shoulder strap

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wning a D-SLR is every budding photographer’s dream, and many camera companies are trying to get their acts right in this market. The arrival of mirrorless cameras and smartphones have certainly taken some sheen off entrylevel D-SLRs, but they are still much sought after. The Canon 1500D sits just above the 3000D, trying to entice the amateur who is ready to spend a little more for a decently built model.

Design and Build Quality

The 1500D is aimed at those who are buying a D-SLR for the first time. The camera is built slightly better than the 3000D with a metal lens mount and a dioptre adjustment dial for the viewfinder. There is a dedicated power button. The buttons and the power switch and the command dial still feels cheap, but we would rather not nitpick on an entry-level camera.

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The EOS 1500D uses a 24.1 megapixel APS-C sensor. The signal is processed by a DIGIC 4+ image processor. It accepts all Canon EF lenses (excluding EF-M lenses). The camera uses OneShot AF, AI Servo AF, AI Focus AF and Manual focussing methods. You have the option of selecting the AF points manually from the nine points www.smartphotography.in

Canon EOS 1500D

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33,995 Body only

Sujith Gopinath

A Trickle of Features available or let the camera select the point automatically.

The 1500D features the usual three metering modes—Evaluative, Partial and Centre-weighted average. Exposure can be compensated up to ±5 EV in 1/3- or 1/2-stop increments. Auto Exposure Bracketing is available up to ±2 EV in 1/3- or 1/2-stop increments. Still images are recorded in JPEG or Raw format with an option to capture both simultaneously. Movies are captured in MOV format at up to Full HD (1920 x 1080). Still images are recorded with maximum dimensions of 6000 x 4000 pixels. The camera can shoot continuously at up to three frames per second.

Shooting modes available are Program

(P), Shutter Priority (Tv), Aperture priority (Av), Manual (M), Scene Intelligent Auto, Creative Auto, Movie and Scene. Scene modes available are Portrait, Landscape, Close-up, Sports, Food and Night Portrait. Sensitivity ranges from ISO 100 to 6400, which can be expanded up to ISO 12,800. White Balance options are Auto (Ambience priority), Auto (White priority), Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Tungsten, White fluorescent light, Flash and Custom. The camera offers a built-in flash with a Guide Number of 9.2 m at ISO 100. Flash modes available are E-TTL II Auto and FE Lock. The flash synchronises with the shutter at 1/200 seconds or slower speeds. Shutter speeds range from 30 to 1/4000 seconds along with a Bulb mode.


Smart Photography August 2018

Mahesh Reddy

Aperture: f/6.3 Shutter Speed: 1/50sec ISO: 800

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The monitor is a 3.0-inch, 920,000dot LCD, while the viewfinder uses an eye-level pentamirror. The camera accepts an SD, SDHC or SDXC card (UHS-I compatible) for storage. The device uses Hi-Speed USB and HDMI (Type C) connectors. The camera is powered by an LP-E10 battery pack (supplied). The 1500D measures 129.0 x 101.3 x 77.6 mm and weighs 475 g with battery, card and kit lens.

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The 1500D has a deep grip with a rubber finish, providing excellent hold. All controls are within your grasp. Images on the LCD were crisp. We did not see any jitter in the display. The EVF is also large and bright enough. The camera is very light along with the kit lens. The 1500D features the typical, well-organised Canon menu. The www.smartphotography.in

JPEG, Fine Quality, 100% (11.3 MB)

JPEG, Normal Quality, 100% (5.5 MB)

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Performance

We received the 1500D along with the 18-55 mm and 55-250 mm kit lenses. We used the 18-55 for all our tests. Autofocus was fast with the viewfinder, but sluggish

KEY SPECIFICATIONS Effective pixels: 24.1 million Sensor Size: APS-C Processor: DIGIC 4+ AF modes: One-Shot AF, AI Servo AF, AI Focus AF AF point selection: Automatic , Manual No. of AF points: 9 Exposure compensation: ±5 EV in 1/3- or 1/2-stop increments Auto exposure bracketing: ±2 EV in 1/3or 1/2-stop increments Still Image Format: JPEG, Raw, Raw + JPEG Max image dimensions: 6000 x 4000 pixel Max. continuous shooting speed: 3 frames per second Bult-in flash: Yes Flash modes: E-TTL II Autoflash, FE Lock Guide Number: 9.2 m at ISO 100 X-sync (sec.): 1/200 sec Sensitivity: ISO 100 to 6400 (expandable up to ISO 12,800) Monitor: 3.0-inch, 920,000-dot LCD Manual focus: Yes Memory card type: SD, SDHC, SDXC, UHS-I compatible Movie format: MOV Shooting modes: Program (P), Shutter Priority (Tv), Aperture priority (Av), Manual (M) Shutter speed range: 30 - 1/4000, Bulb White Balance: Auto (Ambience priority), Auto (White priority), Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Tungsten, White fluorescent light, Flash, Custom Viewfinder type: Eye-level pentamirror Peripheral Connections: Hi-Speed USB, HDMI (Type C) Power source: Battery Pack LP-E10 (supplied) Dimensions: 129.0 x 101.3 x 77.6 mm Weight: 475 g (with battery and card)

and quite loud while using LiveView. The kit lens does not have internal focussing and hence the front element rotates while focussing. The kit lens produced slight darkening of corners at extreme corners with Peripheral Illumination switched on. The lens did not produce any perceptible distortion other than a slight barrel distortion at the wide-angle end. Flare was observed along with purple fringing at the wide-angle end with the lens wide-open.

The camera produced images with native print size of 20 x 13.33 inches at 300 ppi. At 25 percent of the screen size, the images were noise-free up to ISO 3200. Even ISO 6400 was quite usable. At 50 percent view, noise became evident from ISO 1600 onwards. The images, though noisy, could be used till ISO 6400. Viewed at 100 percent, the images were free of noise up to ISO 200. At this view, the images could be used up to ISO 1600. Auto White Balance reproduced original colours except for a mild cast under incandescent light, which could be easily removed in post processing. The images were reasonably sharp with the kit lens.

The 1500D is not meant for videos, especially with the kit lens. The kit lens was very slow in focussing and the camera picked

PLUS

• Price • Reasonably good image quality • Great grip

VERDICT

up the disturbing sound of focus drive.

Value for Money

The EOS 1500D body retails at a RRP of Rs.33,995. It is available as a double lens kit with the EF S18-55 IS II and the EF S55-250 IS II. This kit carries a price tag of Rs.46995. This is fair value for money for an entry-level D-SLR. |SP

FINAL SCORE

74%

Design and Build Quality15/20 Key Features

15/20

Ergonomics

16/20

Performance Autofocus Metering Noise Control Sharpness LCD/EVF Auto WB

2/5 4/5 4/5 3/5 4/5 4/5

Sub-Total

21/30

Value for Money

7/10

MINUS

• Sluggish autofocus • All AF points in the centre • Fixed LCD • Slow and noisy kit lens

The Canon EOS 1500D is aimed at photographers who are taking their baby-steps in photography. The camera features Wi-Fi and NFC. If you are looking to capture videos or you want a responsive camera, then you might not be impressed with the device. Chances are that you will outgrow the camera quite fast because of the slow response and also since it cannot trigger a studio flash. You will find better options in the mirrorless category.

Smart Photography August 2018

Quick Menu offers tips on the selected item, which is helpful for beginners. The 1500D does not have the hot-shoe contacts to trigger a studio flash, similar to the 3000D.

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Inside the Box ✓ Camera body ✓ Li-ion battery NP-W126S ✓ AC power adapter ✓ Plug Adapter ✓ USB cable ✓ Shoulder strap ✓ Body cap ✓ Owner’s manual ✓ Detachable Grip

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etro cameras have a charm of their own, and Fujifilm has stuck to retro styling for all their interchangeable lens cameras. The company now has a wide portfolio of compact APS-C mirrorless interchangeable cameras that have charmed everyone with superior image quality. The X-T100 joins the bandwagon, positioned at the advanced amateur-enthusiast market.

Design and Build Quality

The Fujifilm X-T100 has a sturdy built, though the body is built with a combination of metal and engineering plastic. The camera has a retro styling similar to other Fujifilm mirrorless cameras. The top panel features a the mode dial, an accessory shoe, video record button, function button, command dial and one custom function dial. The LCD tilts and swivels. A vertical dial with a toggle function doubles as the secondary command dial. The camera has a metal lens mount and tripod receptacle.

Smart Photography August 2018

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The Fujifilm X-T100 uses a 24.2-megapixel APS-C (23.5 x 15.7 mm) CMOS imaging sensor with primary colour filter. The camera uses ultrasonic vibrations to keep dust off the sensor unit. The device accepts Fujifilm X mount lenses. The camera uses TTL contrast detect and TTL phase detect AF systems, designating www.smartphotography.in

Fujifilm X-T100

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47,999 Body only

Sujith Gopinath

An Enthusiast’s Delight it Intelligent Hybrid AF. Focus modes available are Single AF, Continuous AF, Manual Focus and AF+MF. AF frames include Single point (7x13), Zone AF (3x3 / 5x5 / 7x7 from 91 areas on 7x13 grid) and Wide/Tracking AF(up to 18 areas).

Still images are captured at up to 6000 x 4000 pixels in JPEG or Raw format with an option to capture both simultaneously. Videos are recorded at up to 4K (3840 x 2160) quality in MOV (H.264, Linear PCM Stereo) format. Exposure is controlled by TTL 256zone metering and metering modes available are Multi, Spot and Average. Exposure can be compensated up to +/-5.0 EV in 1/3 EV steps. Sensitivity ranges from ISO 200 to 12,800, which can be extended from ISO 100 to 51,200. The camera features a mechanical focal plane shutter

and also an electronic shutter. The mechanical shutter provides shutter speeds from 30 to 1/4000 seconds along with Bulb mode (up to 60 min), while the electronic shutter provides speeds from 30 to 1/32000 seconds and Bulb. Flash synchronises with the shutter at 1/180 seconds or slower speeds. The camera incorporates a manual pop-up flash with a Guide Number of 5 m at ISO100. Flash modes available are Auto, Forced Flash, Suppressed Flash, Slow Sync, Rearcurtain sync and Commander. Redeye removal is available. The X-T100 can accept an external flash using the dedicated TTL flash compatible standard accessory shoe (hot-shoe).

JPEG images can be captured continuously at up to 6.0 frames per second and the camera allows you to record up to 26 images in a burst.


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Mahesh Reddy

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Videos can be recorded continuously for a maximum of 30 minutes. The camera employs Face detection and Eye detection. Auto exposure bracketing can be set for 2, 3, 5 or 7 frames at ±1/3EV to ±3EV in 1/3EV steps. Film simulation modes available are Provia/Standard, Velvia/Vivid, Astia/Soft, Classic Chrome, Pro Neg Hi, Pro Neg Std, Monochrome, Monochrome+Ye Filter, Monochrome+R Filter, Monochrome+G Filter and Sepia. Film simulation bracketing allows you to choose three types of film simulation. Dynamic range bracketing options are 100%, 200% and 400%. The X-T100 offers shooting modes such as P (Program AE), A (Aperture Priority AE), S (Shutter Priority AE) and M (Manual Exposure). The

camera supports image stabilisation with compatible OIS lenses. White Balance options include Auto, Custom (3 options), Colour temperature (2500K-10000K), Fine, Shade, Fluorescent (Daylight), Fluorescent (Warm White), Fluorescent (Cool White), Incandescent and Underwater. Self-timer can be set to 2 or 10 seconds, Smile, Buddy (LV.1 to LV.3), Group (1-4 subjects) and Face Auto Shutter. It offers Advanced filters such as Toy camera, Miniature, Pop colour, High-key, Low-key, Dynamic tone, Fish-eye, Soft focus, Cross screen, Partial colour (Red / Orange / Yellow / Green / Blue / Purple), Fog remove and HDR Art. The camera uses a 0.39-inch, 2,360K-dot OLED electronic viewfinder with built-in eye sensor. The main screen is a 3.0-inch,

1,040K-dot, three-way tilt-type touch sensitive TFT colour LCD. The X-T100 accepts an SD/SDHC/ SDXC card (UHS-I compatible) for storage. The camera features Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity along with USB 2.0 High-Speed / micro USB terminal, HDMI Micro connector (Type D) and Microphone/remote release connector (⌀2.5 mm 3-pole mini jack). The camera is powered by an NP-W126S Li-ion battery (supplied). The X-T100 measures 121.0 x 83.0 x 47.4 mm (W x H x D) and weighs 448 g including battery and memory card.

Ergonomics

The X-T100 has a flat front surface, with a textured faux leather finish, but the company provides a detachable plastic hand grip that

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ISO 800 www.smartphotography.in

ISO 1600

ISO 3200

ISO 6400

ISO 12800


Performance

We received the Fujifilm X-T100 along with the Super EBC XC 16-50 mm f/3.5-5.6 OIS II lens. This is not the kit lens that Fujifilm provides along with the camera. The combination was fast in autofocus and the system latched on to the subjects without any problem, even under reasonable low light.

Fujifilm X-series cameras have always impressed us with their excellent noise control, and the X-T 100 is no different. The camera produces images at a native resolution of 20 x 13.33 inches at 300 ppi. At 25 percent of screen size, the images were usable all the way up to ISO 12,800. All images appeared clean at this screen size. Viewed at 50 percent, noise started appearing from ISO 3200 onwards. Images were usable up to ISO 12,800. When viewed at 100 percent, noise started appearing from ISO 400 onwards. The images could be used up to ISO 1600. Though this is not at par with the premium X-series cameras, it is reasonable for an enthusiast model.

The X-T100 reproduced colours true to the original in Auto White Balance, except under incandescent light. The images appeared a little less sharp than we expected, but this could possibly have something to do with the 16-50 mm lens. We normally prefer to do the test with a prime lens or the kit lens, but unfortunately, Fujifilm was unable to send us our preferred lens on time.

Value for Money

The Fujifilm X-T100 body retails at an MRP of Rs.47,999. It is available in two kit forms. The single lens kit with the Fujinon XC15-45 mm f/3.5-5.6 OIS PZ lens carries a price tag of Rs.54,999,

while the dual lens kit with the Fujinon XC 15-45 mm f/3.5-5.6 OIS PZ and the Fujinon XC 50-230 mm f/4.5-6.7 OIS II retails at Rs.70,999. This is fair value for money for this camera. |SP

FINAL SCORE

KEY SPECIFICATIONS Effective pixels: 24.2 million Image sensor: APS-C (23.5 x 15.7mm) CMOS with primary colour filter Sensor cleaning: Ultrasonic vibration Lens mount: Fujifilm X mount File format: Still: JPEG, Raw, Raw+JPEG; Movie: MOV (H.264, Linear PCM Stereo) Max. recorded pixels: 6000 x 4000 Exposure control: TTL 256-zone metering Metering modes: Multi, Spot, Average Shooting modes: P (Program AE), A (Aperture Priority AE), S (Shutter Priority AE), M (Manual Exposure) Exposure compensation: +/-5.0EV in 1/3EV step Image stabilizer: Supported with OIS lenses Sensitivity: ISO200 to 12,800 (Extended from ISO100 to 51,200) Shutter type: Focal Plane Shutter Shutter speed: Mechanical shutter: 30 to 1/4000 sec., Bulb (up to 60 min); Electronic shutter: 30 to 1/32000 sec., Bulb Flash X-sync speed: 1/180 sec. Max. continuous shooting: Approx. 6.0 fps (JPEG max: approx. 26 frames) AE bracketing: 2/3/5/7 frames, ±1/3EV to ±3EV, 1/3EV step Focus mode: Single AF, Continuous AF, MF, AF+MF Focus type: Intelligent Hybrid AF ( TTL contrast AF, TTL phase detection AF) Self-timer: 2 or 10 s, Smile, Buddy (LV.1 – LV.3), Group (1-4 subjects), Face Auto Shutter Guide number: Approx 5m (ISO100) Viewfinder: 0.39-inch, 2,360K-dot OLED colour viewfinder Monitor: 3.0-inch, 1,040K-dot 3 way tilttype TFT colour LCD Best video quality: 4K (3840 x 2160) Touch screen: Yes Storage media: SD/SDHC/SDXC card (UHS-I) Power supply: NP-W126S Li-ion battery (included) Dimensions: 121.0 x 83.0 x 47.4 mm (W x H x D) Weight: Approx. 448g (including battery and memory card)

81%

Design and Build Quality17/20 Key Features

18/20

Ergonomics

17/20

Performance Autofocus Metering Noise Control Sharpness

4/5 4/5 3/5 3/5

(also depends on the lens)

LCD/EVF Auto WB

Sub-Total

3/5 4/5

21/30

Value for Money

PLUS

8/10

MINUS

• 4K video • Good build

• Low display refresh rate

quality • Customisable controls • Tilt and swivel LCD • 6 fps continuous shooting

• Not good for panning

VERDICT The X-T100 is one of the enthusiastlevel mirrorless cameras from Fujifilm. If you are looking for a compact and lightweight APS-C camera that is not very expensive, but still offers advanced features such as 4K video and good continuous shooting speed, you should certainly have a look at the X-T100. www.smartphotography.in

Smart Photography August 2018

provides makes it easy to hold. The rear grip is large enough to provide a good hold. Images were crisp on both the EVF and the LCD, but we found the refresh rate to be a little below our liking. If you pan the camera fast, you could see the image stuck to the screen for about a second, both in LCD and EVF. The menu is arranged well and there are two customisable physical controls. Even touch controls can be customised.

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NSEW E L VI RE

Inside the Box ✓ Lens ✓ Front & rear lens caps ✓ Lens hood (ALC-SH123)

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he Sony E 10-18mm f/4 OSS is a super-wide-angle lens designed for Sony’s APS-C E-mount camera bodies. In 35mm format terms, it is equivalent to 1527mm. The lens is best suited for landscape/interior photography or photographing in cramped situations. Sony’s nomenclature for this lens is SEL1018.

Design & Build Quality

The Sony E 10-18mm f/4 lens uses a polycarbonate outer shell but the lens mount is made of metal. The build quality is quite good. Filter size is 62mm and the lens weighs a mere 225g. The lens dimensions are 70 x 63.5mm (Dia. X Length) and is made in China.

Smart Photography August 2018

Key Features

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The Sony 10-18mm f/4 is an E-mount lens, designed for Sony’s APS-C format mirrorless cameras. It is constructed with 10 elements in 8 groups including 1 x Super ED (Extralow Dispersion) and 3 x Aspherical elements. The special elements help to keep chromatic aberrations under control and offer superior sharpness. The lens offers a diagonal angle of view from 109 to 76 degrees. Aperture range is from f/4 – f/22. The minimum focussing distance is 0.25m (0.82 feet). The lens offers a maximum reproduction ratio of 0.1x and has www.smartphotography.in

Sony E 10-18mm F/4 OSS

` 69,990

Rohinton Mehta

Ultra-wide at Medium Cost a built-in optical image stabiliser (Optical Steady Shot, OSS). Sony does not mention the number of stops advantage the OSS offers.

Ergonomics

The lens is very easy to use, and being lightweight, you can carry it the whole day. When using the camera on a tripod, you have to go through the camera menu to switch off the image stabiliser as there is no direct switch on the lens to do that.

Performance

We tested this lens on a Sony A6300 body. Autofocus was reasonably fast even in medium-low light (but that can depend on the body too). We noticed barrel distortion at varying degrees at 10mm, 12mm and 14mm and a slight pin-cushion distortion at the 18mm end. The distortions can be easily corrected in post processing.

Overall, the 10-18mm performed well. The in-built Optical Steady Shot seemed to perform well as we could shoot at low shutter speeds without a tripod and the results were good. At all marked focal length settings, f/5.6 and f/8 offered the sharpest results. At 10mm, wide open at f/4, images were sharp in the center while the sides/corners were comparatively softer. Sharpness at f/11 was also good at the center (but not as good as with f/5.6 and f/8), with some softening at the corners. Sharpness dropped at f/16 and f/22 due to diffraction of light at very narrow openings. I would consider f/8 to be the optimum aperture. It appeared to me that at 14mm, there was a slight reduction in image quality. Images were generally of good contrast and colour. We noticed some darkening of sides and corners throughout the focal range with the lens wide


Aperture: f/10 Shutter Speed: 1/45sec, hand-held ISO: 500

Rohinton Mehta

Value for Money

The Sony E 10-18mm f/4 OSS is available at an MRP of Rs.69,990/-. At this price and performance, the price seems fair. |SP

KEY SPECIFICATIONS Focal length: 10-18mm Equivalent focal length: 15-27mm in the 35mm format Aperture range: F/4-22 Aperture blades: 7 Image stabilisation: Yes Angle of view: 109 – 76 degrees Minimum focus: 0.25m (9.84”) Max. magnification: 0.1x Filter thread: 62mm Dimensions (Dia. x Length): 70 x 63.5mm Weight: 225g

Design and Build Quality16/20 Key Features

16/20

Ergonomics

18/20

FINAL SCORE

79% MINUS

PLUS Performance Autofocus Sharpness Distortion Control Aberrations Darkening of Corners Extra features Sub-Total Value for Money

4/5 4/5 3.5/5 4/5 3.5/5 3/5 22/30 7/10

• Compact size, light in weight

• Good sharpness

No external switch to disable the built-in image stabiliser

VERDICT

Overall, the Sony E 10-18mm f/4 OSS is a good performer. Being very light in weight, its comfortable to carry along the whole day. Its wide coverage will be appreciated by landscape photographers as well as those working in cramped spaces. There are other ultra-wide-angle zooms which are sharper, but at this price the lens is good value for money. Recommended! www.smartphotography.in

Smart Photography August 2018

open. Flare was observed in shots that included bright areas like the sky.

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Inside the Box ✓ Lens ✓ Front & Rear lens caps ✓ User Manual (leaflet)

Y

ongnuo is a Chinese brand that offers electronic flashguns, accessories and lenses at very reasonable costs. In my review of this lens, I am going to consider this point and not compare the lens quality to expensive equivalents from other manufacturers. The lens in the current review is a Nikon mount lens.

We reviewed a Yongnuo 35mm f/2 Canon mount lens in March 2016. Besides the different mount, the current lens (the Nikon mount lens) has a better build quality. In the earlier reviewed Canon mount lens, the lens extended when focussing; the current lens (Nikon mount) does not extend during focussing, though the elements do move back and forth. The Canon mount lens had a filter size of 52mm; the Nikon mount lens has 58mm filter thread.

Smart Photography August 2018

Design & Build Quality

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The Yongnuo 35mm f/2 lens is designed for the full-frame 35mm format. It is extremely light in weight (approx. 180g). The outer shell is made from plastic but the mount is made of metal. Our sample lens had a Nikon mount and hence the lens was tested on a Nikon D750 body.

Key Features

The 35mm f/2 lens from Yongnuo is made with 7 elements in 5 groups. www.smartphotography.in

Yongnuo ` 8,740 YN35mm F/2N on Amazon.in

Rohinton Mehta

A Budget Lens The lens is fairly well built. Lens elements are multi-coated. The outer body is made from plastic but the lens mount is made of metal. The lens mount has 8 gold plated electrical contacts for data transfer from the lens to the body and vice versa. The lens has a distance scale in feet as well as in meters. The focussing ring, covered with knurled rubber, moves about a quarter turn going from the minimum to maximum distance. While the short throw is good for quick autofocussing, it can compromise on accuracy. On the left of the lens is a switch for MF/AF. The lens uses 7 aperture blades for a smoother bokeh.

Ergonomics

As mentioned earlier, the lens was reviewed using a Nikon D750 body. The lens being simplistic in design, was very easy to use. To manually focus the lens, you need to push the MF/AF switch to the MF position.

Performance

Autofocus was fast and accurate. With the lens wide open at f/2, there was very little corner darkening, which is good. Slight pin cushion distortion could be seen; in all fairness, I have seen more distortion than this in more expensive lenses. When it comes to sharpness, it was a different story. At f/2 (wide open aperture), the lens was a little ‘soft’. At f/4, sharpness had improved further and by f/5.6, it was acceptable. At the narrowest apertures (f/16 and f/19), pixel-peepers will notice a slight loss in sharpness (compared to apertures between f/5.6 and f/11) due to diffraction of light. Flare and ghosting was noticed in strong against-the-light shots.

Value for Money

B&H Photo and Video (USA) sells this lens at USD 89.98 (approx. INR 6120/-) while Amazon.in has a price of INR 8740/-. At this price, the lens is good value. |SP


FINAL SCORE

Mahesh Reddy

75.5%

Design and Build Quality16/20 Key Features

15/20

Ergonomics

18/20

Performance Autofocus Sharpness Distortion Control Aberrations Darkening of Corners Extra features Sub-Total

4/5 2.5/5 4/5 4/5 4/5 2/5 20.5/30

Value for Money

PLUS

• Inexpensive • Acceptable sharpness from f/5.6 onwards • Lightweight

6/10

MINUS •

Unacceptable sharpness between f/2 and f/4

VERDICT

‘Price verses performance’ comes to mind at this stage. The lens is inexpensive and could be acceptable to those who only photograph landscapes and the like (since most landscapes are shot at around f/11 for good depth of field). For budget photographers, the Yongnuo would be a good candidate for consideration.

Aperture: f/5 Shutter Speed: 1/45sec ISO: 200

Lens construction: 7 elements in 5 groups Aperture blades: 7 Aperture Range: F/2- F/19 Supermacro mode: About 0.25 meters Max. magnification: About 0.23x (1:4.35) Drive System: Direct Current Motor Filter diameter: 58mm Max. Dia X L: About 74 x 59mm Weight: About 180g

www.smartphotography.in

Smart Photography August 2018

KEY SPECIFICATIONS

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martphones have become serious imaging devices, reproducing high-quality images and videos that can be quickly shared on websites and social media. With 4K and Full HD capability, smartphones are getting popular as serious video production devices for youtubers and documentary video enthusiasts. A smartphone gimbal lets you steady the phone and facilitate smooth panning and tracking. The Moza Mini-MI smartphone gimbal from Gudsen technology offers independent control along Roll, Yaw and Pitch axes. The Mini-Mi allows you to control movement along these axes individually with eight follow modes. The Moza app, available for Android and iOS, offers professional photo and video settings. The buttons on the hand grip lets you control, focus, zoom, view photos, create slow-motion time-lapse, panoramas, change ISO, shutter, EV and White Balance. The app also supports RGB settings to achieve customised filter effects. The device features builtin artificial intelligence recognition technology, allowing the gimbal to automatically detect multiple subjects simultaneously, even in high-speed action situations.

Smart Photography August 2018

The built-in camera app lets you create beautiful time-lapse shots. The device also enables you to stream live video on Facebook, Youtube, Twitter, and Instagram. You can control the movement using the joystick. The dial wheel can be used to zoom in and out. You can also control the focus using the buttons. The Moza Mini-MI provides 360-degree rotation in roll axis, allowing you to switch from a slow tilt to a quick pan. The smoothness of the movement can be controlled using the app. The Mini-Mi features four 1/4-inch accessory mounts, through which you can attach a video light, microphone or some other accessory. You can also mount the gimbal to a tripod or an extension pole.

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The Moza Mini-MI can be charged using a standard micro USB cable. It allows the gimbal to be charged using a power bank for convenience. It offers wireless phone charging using inductive charging technology in the phone holder. A 5V 2A USB port on the bottom of the handgrip www.smartphotography.in

Moza Mini-Mi smartphone gimbal

Sujith Gopinath

Smooth Smartphone Videos lets you charge even phones that do not feature wireless charging. The Moza Genie App allows you to calibrate the device in case you face a problem with the movement of the gimbal. Once the app detects your gimbal, it provides step-by-step instructions to calibrate the device.

The Moza Mini-MI weighs 543g and measures 143 x 107 x 290 mm. It is powered by a built-in 18650 battery with 2100mAh capacity. The device is sold at an MRP of Rs.9250 and is available with Nikita Distributors. For details, contact Raman Agrawal at +91 9967588171 or visit http://www. gudsen.com/moza-mini-mi.html. |SP


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ompact carbon fibre tripods are hot favourites for travel photography enthusiasts because of being lightweight and having good load bearing capacity. Another advantage is that these compact tripods can conveniently fit in your airline carry-on baggage without adding too much weight.

The four leg sections can be extended with an advanced twist lock system, allowing it to be set up fast, without much effort. A dedicated suspension loop allows you to add counterbalance weights or bags for stability. The legs can be positioned at three different angles, 20°, 45° and 80°. The tripod features non-slip, all-weather TPU

Vanguard Veo II 264 CB tripod

Sujith Gopinath

A Traveller’s Companion grips on one leg for the perfect hand grip even in cold environments. A bubble level on the head allows you to position the tripod perfectly.

The 264 CB has an angled rubber feet by default, which can be changed to a spiked feet, which is sold separately. The tripod ships along with a

tripod bag with extension system to accommodate a standard head of any size. The Vanguard VEO 2 264 CB retails at an MRP of Rs.15,990 and comes with a two-year warranty. For details, contact Raman Agrawal at +91 9967588171 or visit https://www. vanguardworld.com/photo_video/ products/tripods. |SP www.smartphotography.in

Smart Photography August 2018

The Vanguard VEO II 264 CB is an easy portable and lightweight 26 mm, four-section carbon fibre travel tripod kit with a multi-action ball head. The tripod can carry a maximum load of 8 kg. It weighs 1.3 kg and can be extended up to 155 cm. The tripod features a collapsible central column, which makes it extremely portable. The multi-action ball head features an Arca-Swiss type quick release plate with a 1/4-inch D-ring screw. The ball head has three independent knobs for locking, panning, and friction control.

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3 Days

(Indoor & Outdoor)

Aug 31, Sept 1 & 2

www.focusnip.com PHOTOGRAPHY INSTITUTE


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